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Research degrees (mphil/phd) creative arts and cultural industries.

creative arts phd

creative arts phd

Key information

Home student fees (full-time) : £4,860 per year Home student fees (part-time) : £2,430 per year Overseas student fees (full-time) : £21,630 per year Overseas student fees (part-time) : £10,815 per year

Please note that fees go up each year.   See  research fees  for further details.

We normally require a 2.1 bachelor's degree (or its equivalent) plus a Masters degree in appropriate subject area plus one reference. In exceptional cases we may accept applicants who do not meet these criteria if they show evidence of a strong Masters degree and/or appropriate level of relevant work experience. International applicants should also see  Doctoral School English language requirements

Course overview

This MPhil/PhD Creative Arts and Cultural Industries research degree provides advanced training and research experience at a doctoral level in the broad areas at the intersection of the Arts and cultural production and the cultural economy. It will be particularly focused on the area of Cultural and Creative Industries practice and policy, work and social justice in the cultural industries, including issues such as curation, the politics of cultural production, independent cultural economies and moral economies.

This programme will allow students to draw on the wide expertise in the School of Arts in music, arts and film production, from the perspective of debates around the creative economy. It provides a core of training in research methods combined with a clear structure of progression thereafter.

Most SOAS research students spend some time doing fieldwork in the regions of their research. Through SOAS’ various connections with individuals and institutions in the universities and governments of Asia and Africa, students may be able to benefit from personal contacts and introductions.

Why study Creative Arts and Cultural Industries at SOAS

In year one students are required to follow a course of research training shared across the School of Arts, with dedicated breakout sessions appropriate to the pathway. In addition, students may be required to take one or more postgraduate courses (eg, Theory and Method in Ethnomusicology or Theory and Method in Art History), depending on their prior qualifications and the requirements of their research project.

Students are also expected to attend departmental research seminars.

An annual training plan is to be agreed with the lead supervisor to help ensure students have the requisite skills to undertake their planned research and produce a thesis of the required academic standard.

Research proposal/upgrade paper

In term 3 of Year 1 (full-time) or term 3 of Year 2 (part-time), students submit a Research Proposal/Upgrade Paper of about 12,000 words, typically including the following elements:

Adjustments to one or more of these sections, including additions or deletions where appropriate, are possible by prior arrangement between the student and supervisory committee.

This research proposal/upgrade paper is assessed by the student’s supervisory committee in an oral exam (viva voce), lasting up to one hour. Prior to the viva voce, the student will have presented an earlier version of the research proposal/upgrade paper in a departmental research seminar, involving a 20 minute oral presentation, followed by a discussion, also open to other staff and students.

Year 2, 3 and 4

On successful completion of the viva voce, students are formally upgraded to PhD and proceed to the second year (full-time) or third year (part-time).

If the assessors consider there to be shortcomings in the research proposal/upgrade paper, a student will be asked to revise it to their satisfaction before the upgrade to PhD status can be confirmed. Students are not permitted to proceed to the next year or to fieldwork until the upgrade process has been completed.

The thesis must be in English, not be more than 100,000 words, excluding bibliography and appendix, be reflective of the investigation carried out whilst a postgraduate research student and form a distinct contribution to the knowledge of the subject as set out in SOAS Postgraduate Research Degree Regulations.

Submission of the thesis is normally expected by the end of the third year, but when justified up to an additional three terms of enrolment may be agreed to enable the completion of writing-up of the thesis.

Students may not submit their thesis after four years of full-time registration (seven years for part-time) have elapsed.

Examination is by a minimum of two independent examiners at least one of whom is external to SOAS. Examination consists of an assessment of the thesis and a viva voce covering the thesis and the research upon which it is based.

Students successfully completing the programme are awarded a PhD in Creative Arts and Cultural Industries.

Students who do not meet the requisite standard to achieve a PhD may, if they meet the requirements set out in SOAS Postgraduate Research Degree Regulations, be awarded an MPhil in Creative Arts and Cultural Industries.

Important notice

The information on the website reflects the intended programme structure against the given academic session. The modules are indicative options of the content students can expect and are/have been previously taught as part of these programmes. However, this information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.

Teaching and learning

New students will be supervised by a panel of two academics consisting of a lead supervisor and a second supervisor. Occasionally a third supervisor may be appointed. Lead supervisors will usually be located in the School of Arts while second and third supervisors can be located in any of the SOAS Departments or Centres. Beyond this, the department research tutor has overall responsibility for SOAS research students, being available to discuss general problems.

The first, second and (if relevant) third supervisors form the students supervisory committee.

Current SOAS PhD students wishing to transfer to the PhD Creative Arts and Cultural Industries who enrolled before 2018-19 and have a supervisory committee of 3 members will retain a 3 person supervisory committee after the transfer.

SOAS PhD students who enrolled before 2018/19 and have a supervisory committee of three members, and who wish to transfer to the PhD in Creative Arts and Creative Arts will retain a three person supervisory committee after the transfer.

MPhil upgrades

As previously advised in Doctoral School circulars, due to the current health crisis we did not  hold a School of Arts Upgrade symposium in 2020. MPhil students had to submit the Upgrade portfolio on PhD Manager by May 15 to ensure timely reporting on the outcome to the Doctoral School by June 15. Extensions to this date could be considered in consultation with supervisors and the School of Arts Director of Doctoral Studies, Ashley Thompson, keeping in mind that we seek to keep students on track for progression mid-September whenever possible. Students should inform the Doctoral School of any extensions organised in this way by sending an email to: [email protected]

SOAS Library

SOAS Library is one of the world's most important academic libraries for the study of Africa, Asia and the Middle East, attracting scholars from all over the world. The Library houses over 1.2 million volumes, together with significant archival holdings, special collections and a growing network of electronic resources.


Fees and funding, fees for 2023/24 entrants per academic year.

Please note that fees go up each year.

See  research fees  for further details.

Students in the School of Arts develop a ​​critical and theoretically informed approach to global arts and culture. In addition to an intercultural awareness and practical expertise, graduates gain a wide portfolio of transferable skills which are especially sought after in the creative and cultural industries.

Recent School of Arts graduates have been hired by:

Find out about our  Careers Service

A student's perspective

I've been here for five years now, taking my BA and MA here before embarking on my PhD studies, so I've obviously had a good experience! I'd best describe this time as "enriching", opening my eyes to the best scholarship from around the world.  - Lois Barnett

creative arts phd

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Expressive Therapies

Apply research and creativity to spark individual and societal change.

Transform individuals and communities through creativity, scholarship, and collaboration. Enhance your practice and become a leader in expressive therapies through this low-residency doctoral program, which interweaves artistic expression and inquiry with a focus on research. Join with Lesley’s world-recognized faculty and other committed professionals to expand the theory and practice of expressive therapies, exploring new opportunities for research and global impact.

Lesley University’s doctoral program in expressive therapies provides you with the opportunity for in-depth study, artistic growth, and professional development regardless of your arts therapy specialization.

Guided by your own interests and experience, you’ll conduct relevant research and contribute new scholarship to the field. Whether you’re looking to further your career in higher education or become a leader in an arts therapy discipline, our program is designed to help you meet your goals.

The low-residency model provides a convenient format that allows you to expand your knowledge base in expressive therapies, while accommodating your work schedule and personal life. Complete a 2-week on-campus residency for three summers. During the residency, you’ll meet with your faculty advisor, attend seminars and classes, design research projects, and collaborate with other doctoral students. Between residencies, continue your work from home while staying connected with your faculty advisor and peers via online class sessions.

Program Structure

Low-Residency Doctoral Program

Students sit in chairs in a circle having a class discussion on Lesley's lawn.

Low-Residency Format

Participate in one 2-week summer residency on Lesley University’s Cambridge campus for the first 3 years of your program. Between residencies, continue your studies online with Lesley faculty, devoting significant weekly time toward doctoral study. Your final years are dedicated to off-site, independent work on your dissertation with support from your faculty advisors. 

Shaun McNiff speaks about his career in expressive therapies

Innovators in the Field

Established over 40 years ago, we were the first graduate program in the U.S. to train professionals in this emerging field. Today our program is the largest of its kind and remains at the forefront of innovation. Our reputation and outstanding faculty—all practitioners in the arts—are what attract students from around the world.

Artistic photo of Noel King with hands around face and prism over her fingers

Myriam Savage ’15

Expressive arts therapy can treat:.

elderly hands with pastels

How Creative Expression Can Benefit Older Adults

Mitchell kossak receives 'shining star' award.

man walking in harvard square, cambridge

Cambridge, MA

A nexus for higher education and mental health counseling practice and research, each year 250,000 students arrive to Cambridge from around the globe. The intellectual and cultural capital runs deep, and so do your opportunities addressing barriers to wellness. From Lesley’s location, access innovative community, hospital, and school-based mental health programs.

faculty robyn flaum cruz

Professor of Expressive Therapies

Dr. Robyn Cruz’s clinical work has spanned populations such as adults with serious and persistent mental illnesses and children and adolescents with trauma and substance abuse issues. Her doctoral degree is in Educational Psychology with a specialization in Measurement and Methodology. She has worked as a research methodologist and research consultant, taught doctoral students since 1995, and has taught graduate courses in dance therapy, research methods, and statistics to students from many disciplines in the US, Europe, and South America.

Her courses reflect her interests in creative arts therapies research that uses the broad range of available methods and particularly, incorporating research thinking and resources into creative arts therapies clinical practices. Her teaching philosophy and practice are grounded in a professional collaboration model that reflects skills honed by teaching statistics to doctoral students from many disciplines at the University of Arizona. She uses a model based on the fact that students learn least from an instructor's oral recitation of information and most from engaging the subject matter themselves.

Robyn believes that policy and leadership go hand-in-hand with creative arts therapies and are important for the continued development and viability of these professions. She has devoted years of service to the University and to the Creative Arts Therapies community at large. She served as Co-Chair for the Lesley University Institutional Review Board from 2012-2021, and as IRB member from 2005 to the present. She was featured in the Lesley University 2012 Annual Report.

She is a past President of the American Dance Therapy Association (ADTA), serving four years as Vice President and four years as President of the organization. In these capacities she regularly visited Washington, DC to speak with lawmakers about creative arts therapies with respect to access for clients and licensing. As ADTA President, she introduced the Multicultural and Diversity Committee to the ADTA Board of Directors. This was the first new standing committee created in the organization in over 25 years.

Robyn also brought the Dance/Movement Therapy Certification Board, a separate credentialing body for dance therapy, and new credentials (R-DMT and BC-DMT) into existence during her presidency, creating new professional opportunities and oversight for professional dance therapists. She is a former editor of American Journal of Dance Therapy, and served as Editor-in-Chief of The Arts in Psychotherapy from 2002 to 2015. She is past Chairperson of the National Coalition for Creative Arts Therapies Associations.  

Michele Forinash

Michele Forinash

Professor, Director of the PhD in Expressive Therapies

Dr. Forinash is Professor and Director of the PhD program in Expressive Therapies at Lesley University. A graduate of Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia, Dr. Forinash completed her master’s and doctorate at New York University. She is a past president of the American Music Therapy Association and a past chair of the National Coalition of Creative Arts Therapies (NCCATA). She has published articles and chapters on qualitative research, supervision, feminist music therapy, and LGBTQ awareness and has presented internationally on these topics. For ten years she served as the North American Co-Editor for the online international music therapy journal Voices: A World Forum for Music Therapy ( ). She is also an associated supervisor for the doctoral program in music therapy at Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark.

Michaela Kirby

Michaela Kirby

Associate Professor of Art Therapy

Dr. Michaela Kirby (she, her, hers), a Board Certified/Registered Art Therapist, a Licensed Psychologist and a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, has been core faculty at Lesley University since 2000.  Currently, she teaches in the masters and doctoral programs. Prior to this position, Dr. Kirby was the Director of Field Training (2009-2013), the Coordinator of the Graduate Art Therapy program (2006-2009), and the Coordinator of the Undergraduate Art Therapy program (2000-2006).  Dr. Kirby has been involved in the American Art Therapy Association for many years, serving most recently as on the Board of Directors from 2015-2019.

Dr. Kirby has many years of direct clinical experience with a range of populations and settings including pre-school to older adults and from hospitals to schools and community settings.  Areas of specialization include using sandplay in therapy, supervision, social class and sexuality/gender. 

Dr. Kirby has a shared fiber arts studio with Michelle Napoli, DAT, ATR-BC, the founder of the Survivor Quilt Project (SQP), an art-based project created for the purpose of speaking truth about incest to the next generation.  As part of this project, they created a social action community-based art process to highlight and explore the sociopolitical construction of aspects of sexuality through the creation of The Vulva Quilt , which has been exhibited at conferences and community settings.   In addition, Dr. Kirby has created a quilt titled My Story that is part of the Survivor Quilt Project.   In addition to fiber arts, Dr. Kirby has explored other mediums including collage, mixed-media and body casting as a vehicle for change. 

Michaela has a private practice doing individual therapy and supervision as well as trainings in sexuality, art therapy, and sandplay therapy.

Professor Jason Frydman

Jason Frydman

Assistant Professor, Expressive Therapies and Drama Therapy

Jason S. Frydman , PhD, RDT/BCT, NCSP is a registered drama therapist, board certified trainer, and nationally certified school psychologist. He holds a master’s degree in drama therapy (New York University), postgraduate certificate from the Institute for the Arts in Psychotherapy, PhD in school psychology (Fordham University), and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Tulane University. At Tulane, Dr. Frydman coordinated Safe Schools NOLA, a National Institute of Justice-funded multi-year grant that provided ongoing professional development for New Orleans public school educators in trauma-informed classroom practices and school-wide programming. His research interests include creative arts therapies in schools, research issues in drama therapy, trauma-informed interventions in the education system, and mental health literacy promotion. 

For the North American Drama Therapy Association, Dr. Frydman has served as both Research Chair (2019-2021) and Communications Chair (2012-2015) and co-chaired the association's 2012 conference. Additional service to the profession includes being appointed to the mental health advisory committee for the Foundation for Jewish Camping and reviewing research proposals for the National Endowment for the Arts (2022). Dr. Frydman currently serves on the editorial boards of School Psychology Review, Translational Issues in Psychological Science, and Drama Therapy Review. At Lesley, Dr. Frydman has served as co-chair for the Institutional Review Board since 2021.

Professional service

Jason is active in professional service, including

Mitchell Kossak

Mitchell Kossak

Professor/Coordinator of Expressive Therapies

Dr. Mitchell Kossak , LMHC, REAT is a professor in the Department of Graduate Expressive Therapies at Lesley University. He served as Department Chair from 2006 to 2013. He was the President and Executive Co-Chair for the International Expressive Arts Therapy Association (IEATA) 2010-2016. He has been a licensed mental health counselor, since 1994, and is a Registered Expressive Arts Therapist (REAT).

He is the Associate Editor of the Journal of Applied Arts and Health and Co-Chair of the Institute for Arts and Health at Lesley University. His clinical work combines expressive arts therapies with body-centered approaches with a variety of populations addressing issues such as chronic pain, recovery from trauma, depression, anxiety, life transitions and relationships. In addition he has worked extensively with autistic children and adults. Mitchell has trained in a variety of mind body modalities including Polarity Therapy, Craniosacral Therapy, Deep Tissue Massage and Bioenergetics. In Expressive Arts Therapies he has training in music therapy, experimental theater, psychodrama, and authentic movement. He studied Sound Healing with innovators in the field of sacred sound and transformation of consciousness, such as Dr. John Beaulieu author of Music and Sound in the Healing Arts and Silvia Nakkach director of the Vox Mundi Project. In addition to this training, he has studied and practiced energy based healing forms such as Tai Chi, Chi Kung, Vipassana meditation, and Iyengar yoga for over 30 years. He earned his doctorate from the Union Institute and University in interdisciplinary studies with a concentration in Expressive Arts Therapy and transpersonal psychology. He has written about and presented his research on rhythmic attunement, improvisation, psychospiritual and community-based approaches to working with trauma and embodied states of consciousness at conferences nationally and internationally. He is the author of Attunement in Expressive Arts Therapy:  Toward an Understanding of Embodied Empathy. He is the Associate Editor of The Journal of Applied Arts and Health and Co-Chair of the Institute for Arts and Health at Lesley University. 

Mitchell Kossak is also a professional musician, performing for the past 30 years in the Boston area.

Kelvin Ramirez

Kelvin Ramirez

Associate Professor/Coordinator of Art Therapy

Dr. Kelvin Ramirez is a Board Certified Registered Art Therapist (ATR-BC) and core faculty member of the Department of Graduate Expressive Therapies . Kelvin is a Board Member of FNE International, a 501(c)3 organization that partners with communities in developing nations to identify opportunities to advance housing, health and education. With that international experience, Kelvin continues to collaborate and develops programs with educators, clinicians, and community leaders in Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic and India. He has developed academic curriculum that build and reinforce initiatives in Nicaragua, The Dominican Republic, Haiti and India.

Prior to joining Lesley, Kelvin was the vice principal of a high school in the South Bronx where he developed and incorporated art therapy within educational systems to enhance student’s personal and academic growth. During his 9-year tenure as vice principal, art therapy was infused throughout the academic and therapeutic approaches of the school, increasing retention and shifting behavioral approaches to enhance students' socio-emotional development.

Kelvin has taught for the Counseling Division at the College of New Rochelle and the Clinical Art Therapy Program at Long Island University C.W. Post.

His current areas of interest and research include:

Teaching is important to Kelvin, because it is through this act of service that people are prepared to direct their destinies and author their own stories. It is a profession that entrusts educators with the malleable minds of the future. Kelvin holds fast to the unwavering ideals that brought him to education, including that social injustices can only be remedied by an educated populous, that an educated mind is a mind called into action for the betterment of all human kind, and that through educating our future generations, our positive influence on the world will continue long after we expire.

faculty jason butler

Jason Butler

Professor of Drama Therapy, Department Chair of Graduate Expressive Therapies

Dr. Jason D. Butler  is a Registered Drama Therapist, Board Certified Trainer, and New York State Licensed Creative Arts Therapist. Jason is a former President of the North American Drama Therapy Association (NADTA) and previously served on the NADTA Board of Directors as President-Elect and Communications Chair. He is the editor-in-chief for  The Arts in Psychotherapy and the former training director for DvT Montreal, a satellite of the Institute for Developmental Transformations.

Prior to joining Lesley University, Jason was a professor in Creative Arts Therapy at Montreal's Concordia University, serving for a portion of that time as the graduate program director for drama therapy and a member of the Arts in Health Research Collective.   Jason is an internationally known drama therapist, having presented on drama therapy in many countries, including the Czech Republic, China, Hong Kong, South Africa, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. He has served as an adjunct faculty member at Lesley University and at New York University and was one of the first recipients of the NADTA Teaching Excellence Award in 2012. 

Prior to being a full-time professor, Jason was the director of Goddard Riverside Community Center’s The Other Place, a psycho-social program and drop-in center for homelessness and mental illness in New York City. Prior to finding drama therapy, he was a high school theatre teacher. His publications include articles and book chapters on drama therapy education, arts therapies pedagogy, schizophrenia, developmental transformations, and role theory. His current research includes an exploration of the drama therapy student experience as well as the application of drama therapy theory to experiential learning.

Review all graduate tuition and fees , and what they cover.

Tuition and fees are subject to change each year, effective June 1.

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Research degrees

Research degrees at uca.

Studying a creative research degree at UCA means joining a vibrant and progressive top ten research community with a wealth of specialist resources for creative research and practice.

Joining us for your creative PhD will give you an unparalleled opportunity to delve deep into an area of research that is relevant to your personal ambitions and aspirations.

You'll be part of our imaginative, supportive research community at our UCA Doctoral College , where you'll have a regular base to design your own studies, explore your chosen field, make academic connections and develop unique and impressive doctoral work.

If you're new to the idea of studying a PhD and want to find out more, our video below with Dr Victoria Kelley, UCA's Director of Research and Innovation, will give you an insight of what to expect.

For further details of the Vice-Chancellor’s Studentships, University for the Creative Arts 2023 competition, click here .

PhD study at UCA video

Studying a PhD at UCA

Phds at uca.

A PhD is an advanced postgraduate qualification where you plan and complete your own focused investigation into a subject you have chosen, and produce a piece of original research that contributes new knowledge to the academic community.

At the UCA Doctoral College, students are undertaking PhD's in a variety of creative subjects, from exploring cultural hybridity in Nigerian film , to interpreting the behaviour of ants through fine art .  

Before making the decision to do a PhD, it is important to understand the nature of this programme and how this differs from Masters’-level study.

Find out more on

As a research student at UCA, you’ll have the option to choose a traditional or practice-based route for your studies. Whichever you choose, you’ll develop an original written thesis, and practice-based candidates will need to produce accompanying creative work. 

You can choose to study either full-time or part-time.

Throughout your studies, you will be supervised by UCA's creative research staff who have experience in the general area of your research. Your supervisors will not ‘teach’ you, but will act in a mentoring role, providing feedback and encouragement and helping you to develop the elements required for a PhD qualification.

Many students go on to collaborate with their supervisors, and the wider UCA research community, both during and after their studies.

View our Research Staff Profiles

As we are a creative university with a wide range of specialisms, there are plenty of avenues your PhD study could take. Your study could focus on any one of the following spheres of interest:

Academic requirements A recognised Master’s degree (or equivalent) relevant to the proposed programme of study.

A first- or second-class honours degree (or recognised equivalent) with appropriate research or professional experience.

English Language requirements for international candidates IELTS 7.0 overall, with 7.0 for writing and other elements not less than 6.5 (or equivalent qualification).

Vice-Chancellor’s Studentships 2023

The studentship package includes a fee waiver for three years’ full-time study, and a stipend of £17,688 each year for three years (or equivalent for part-time study for Home students). The studentships recognise excellence in research and are highly competitive and limited in number. Applicants whose application passes an initial review will be invited to interview. Applicants who are successful at interview and offered a place will be put forward for consideration for the Vice-Chancellor’s Studentship awards. Studentship decisions are based on the relevance of the research proposal, and performance at interview. Those applying for a studentship or other funding must apply by 17 April 2023. Decisions on studentship awards will be announced by 30 July 2023.

When submitting your proposal as part of your application for one or more of the Vice-Chancellor’s Studentships, please indicate at the top of your proposal text for which Studentship the proposal should be considered.

About the centre

Founded in 1998, the Animation Research Centre at the University for the Creative Arts, Farnham is a centre for innovation, doctoral study, debate and dialogue, interdisciplinary and practice-based research into animation in all its most expanded forms. ARC aims to initiate, enhance, and promote creative innovation through scholarly, practice-based and technological investigation at the cutting edge of animation in all of its most expanded forms. Our current activities range from archival research, conference organization, exhibition curation and academic publication to investigations in hand-made aesthetics, immersive technology, block chain, machine learning and movement capture. We actively lead and participate in debate and dialogue with international research networks and the animation of other disciplines through cross-cultural, inter- and multi-disciplinary collaborations.

ARC benefits from UCA's archives of post-1960s animation. Oscar winning animator, Bob Godfrey, established the Animation course at UCA in 1969, which was the first Higher Education animation course in the UK and his archive is held at UCA. Although popularly known for his children’s TV series, such as Roobarb and Custard and The Do-It-Yourself Animation Show , Godfrey also created a number of more experimental and adult works that drew upon traditions of British satire, DADA and Situationism. This is complimented by the Dick Arnall collection spanning a range of independent productions for Channel 4 in the 1980s and 1990s that reimagined animation as an artform. We have the ambition to acquire additional collections with a focus on our alumni and former staff that would create a history of independent animation in the UK from the late 60s up to the present day.

‘Diversifying Animation’ PhD Project Area

We invite practice-based or thesis-only projects that respond to the notion of diversifying/decolonising animation. Research questions asked could include, but are not limited to:

‘Jo Spence and Rosy Martin: Pioneering Phototherapy’ PhD Project Area

A PhD archival research project-based using material in the Hyman Collection, the Jo Spence Memorial Library Archive, and elsewhere, to look at the development of phototherapy through the collaborative practice of Jo Spence and Rosy Martin. Starting in the 1970s and with a focus in the 1980s, it will situate this practice in terms of therapeutic strategies as well photographic practice, to address both the evolution of alternative therapies and the importance of self-portraiture to feministic discourse. It would also address the extensive writing on the subject by Spence and Martin. The thesis would look at issues around collaboration and the ways in which the art world struggles to appreciate multi-authored work. It would seek to contextualize this type of work with reference to collaborative projects and collectives in the 1970s and 1980s, including Exit, Half Moon, and the Photographer’s Workshop. Much writing on Spence has medicalized her work, focusing on her cancer diagnoses and searches for alternative treatments (see especially Susan E Bell), but this doctorate would refocus attention on the more psychological and performative aspects of her practice, following the studies of Paula Farrance and others, and would address strategies that used humor and the absurd to address trauma.

‘Race, Gender and Sexuality in British Photography, 1980s-2000s’ PhD Project Area

A PhD archival research-based project asking: how have different generations of British photographers worked towards changing the representation of race, gender and sexuality in photography? Starting in the early 1980s going through to the early 2000s what has happened? How has the work been supported? What aspects of these photographers’ work needs re investigation, re-evaluation, and re-thinking? And why now? The investigation will take into consideration the relationship of the work to society, and to academia making it a socio political enquiry as well as a research project looking at the British photography scene.

Photographers of particular interest will be: Emily Anderson; Roshini Kempadoo; Tessa Boffin; Joy Gregroy and Eileen Perrier. all of whom have rarely, if ever, been studied as part of any research project; neither have their archives been widely seen or researched. They have had limited exposure in the UK mostly through small exhibitions and publications with occasional inclusion in museum shows. The theoretical backdrop to this proposed research will include difference theory (e.g., the writings of Anne Williams and Victor Burgin), theories of sexuality and gender including Foucault and Butler, as well theories of race representation originating in Said, Hall and Gilroy, and later Sarah Ahmed. The researcher will also need to be fully aware of Baba and Spivak as key references. Research questions may include:

About the centre

Creative Technologies Research Centre ([email protected]): The aim of [email protected] is to develop cutting-edge creative training and research programmes, ensure [email protected] is a leader in producing the creative workforce that is the most skilled in the world in the creation, processing, distribution, and the consumption (use) of games, virtual, augmented, and real-time production technology for immersive applications. The research centre working closely with the UCA Doctoral College acts as a homing beacon for individual and group research projects undertaken by our research scholars, but also for external multi-organisational research projects, platforms, and events.

‘Novel Toolkit for the Metaverse’ PhD Project Area

To deploy a Metaverse, we need a novel toolkit that can be easily adapted by organisations that are Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). This toolkit should seamlessly integrate the three key elements of creative computing technologies to build the Metaverse: the front-end interaction layer (including novel gesture, gloves based or mobile devices), a middle layer (including novel processing, database, intelligence, distribution, and payments) and the visual layer (through novel displays in VR headsets, mobile devices, large screens or holograms). The scholar will address the following research questions (RQs) and provide novel recommendations.

Key potential research questions:

Novel Realtime Rendering for Immersive Virtual Environments’ PhD Project Area

There is an increasing demand in the Creative Industries for cutting-edge content, interactive experiences, and immersive virtual worlds. This research will push the frontiers in integrating new techniques for emerging immersive applications. The scholar will address the following research questions (RQs) and provide novel recommendations.

The novel immersive environments as a research deliverable will be validated with the target end users in creative application domains throughout the PhD project.

The Centre for Sustainable Design (CfSD) has built world class knowledge and expertise of sustainable innovation and product sustainability. The Centre researches, develops and disseminates understanding of present and future sustainability impacts and solutions related to innovation, products, technologies, services and systems through projects, training, events, networks and information. CfSD works with partners in Europe, North America, and Asia to deliver high quality results. The Centre is an internationally recognised centre of excellence.

‘Repair Cafes’ as a way to build translocal networks and communities’ PhD Project Area

There are now over 2500 repair cafes worldwide. Very little research has been completed into repair cafes worldwide: CfSD led the 1st two global surveys and partnered in the 3rd – which has resulted book chapters, articles and a recently published journal paper that explored the links to translocal networks and communities. Repair cafes are citizen led activities and research related to the journal article also highlighted very little research related to role OF citizen and civil society in the Circular Economy. In addition, a unique repair-carbon calculator has been developed through UCA/FRC collaboration that has been open sourced to all repair cafes. At present, further collaboration UCA/FRC is being undertaken to produce a tool to extract the details of 1750+ repairs completed by FRC. Finally, UCA/FRC collaboration provided insight to contribute to establishment 3 repair cafes in Taiwan under the banner of the Southern Taiwan Repair Alliance. Two follow-up workshops were held in Taiwan in 2020 and 2023 to share knowledge and experience. A PhD might complete a 4th global repair café study – Repair Café International Foundation (RCIF) has expressed interest in further collaboration on a survey and support with getting the questionnaire out to repair cafes. There might also be more depth case studies on the UK and 1 or 2 other countries with implications/insights provided for Surrey based repair cafés including FRC. The research would have implications for local and national policy makers, town councils, citizens and other repair cafes.

‘Architects, Designers, Mothers’ PhD Project Area

There is an increasing body of research on women's overlooked contribution to architecture and design. However there is still a significant gap in the literature in terms of key issues that have affected the ability to study and pursue careers in architecture and design past and present; motherhood and caring roles.This PhD studentship invites candidates with research projects that explores histories, theories, and practices around the relationship between architecture or design professionals, motherhood and care in the 20th and/or 21st centuries.

Candidates are invited to submit proposals for research projects that are historically / theoretically focused or as a current subject to be addressed through or creative practice. The project can be domestic or international in scope and can focus on design and/or architecture discipline(s). Subjects and approaches could include but are not limited to: creative practitioners marginalised due to motherhood or caring responsibilities; methodologies for researching architect/designer mothers’ contributions to architecture and design; non heteronormative parenthood and the architecture/design profession; motherhood, social reproduction and the architecture/design professions; the impact of parenthood on professional opportunities past or present; the role of motherhood in shaping the design process; the role of archives, collections and exhibitions in shaping narratives of architect/design mothers. The research project should critically engage with key issues in contemporary architecture/design research and recognise the interdisciplinary and intersectional nature of the subject. Based in the Canterbury School of Architecture and Design (CSAD), the research project is expected to engage with research in other Schools at UCA. While we expect applicants to have a background in architecture and/or design, we welcome candidates from different relevant backgrounds and disciplines. The PhD can be pursued either by thesis-only or creative practice.

UCA Doctoral College

Acting as a base for students, academic and support staff, UCA Doctoral College offers a distinctive model of excellence and leadership in contemporary arts doctoral studies provision.

How to Apply

The first steps to apply for a UCA research degree are:

1. Register to apply here . 2. Within one day, we will send you an online application form. 3. Complete the form, including your CV, research proposal and bibliography (for guidance on writing    a research proposal, see the video and FAQs below).

When we receive your application, our panel will review it. They may ask you to develop your proposal further, refer it to a relevant academic Supervisor or School, invite you to an online interview or let you know if we can’t progress your application.

When to apply: All of our PhD students begin their studies in October, so we recommend that you submit your application by 25 April. We will consider applications after this date, but early applications are more likely to be successful, as supervisors’ capacity is limited. The deadline to apply is the end of July. However, please note that applications received in July are likely to take longer to consider due to summer vacations. 

More information

If you are successful in gaining a place on the PhD programme, the University will appoint a supervisory team for your project. However, if there is a member of staff who you would particularly like to work with you can let us know in your proposal. If you wish, you may also contact a potential supervisor directly.

In  Stage 1 , the Research Degree leader and at least two relevant supervisors will look at your Research Proposal Form, supporting bibliography and CV to assess the strength of your proposal, your relevant experience, and the resources, supervision and equipment we have available to support your project. The panel will complete a feedback form and make a recommendation: reject, resubmit or interview. If the recommendation is to interview, the interview panel will usually include the prospective supervisor(s).

Stage 2  of the process is a formal interview. This will explore your relevant qualifications, motivation for undertaking a PhD, your past experience of research, the clarity of your research objectives, the feasibility of your study, how well you re able to articulate your proposal, your awareness of other researchers’ work within your field of study, the strength of your own practice, and your references. If the panel recommends you for a place, the decision will need to be approved by the Head of School, who will agree a supervisory team before offering you a place.

We know that, at this stage, your research proposal can only be a first draft of your ideas and plans for your research project, but it should be well enough constructed for the assessment panel to judge your application fairly and systematically.

All PhDs include a substantial written component. In your draft proposal you are required to supply enough written material here to indicate the significance of the project and how you will seek to develop it with your supervisors. Each required section has a word length attached and you are very strongly advised to write to this full length – this will give your proposal its best chance of success.

In total you are expected to provide 2000 words of explanation.

Your proposal MUST include the following elements:

Title of project  

Topic A clear, succinct description of your proposed research project. 300 words

Background and context This section should explain the background and context of your research, outline the contribution to knowledge that you wish to make, and explain why this is an important area for research. 500 words

O bjectives and Impact What do you hope to have achieved by the successful completion of your PhD project? How might it have an impact in the world? This section should show what you want to achieve by spelling out four objectives for your research. Each objective should be expressed in 100 words.

Related texts This section should outline the most important written research that has already been carried out in your research area. Explain the value of these sources. You should discuss at least three books or journal essays: 300 words in total.

Research method This section should outline the method you plan to use, including:

Visual and other sources of research activity relevant to your project

Many of our doctoral students make art or design artefacts as part of their PhD research. You are invited to include a visual portfolio of related works, of whatever kinds, and to submit it with your written draft proposal. Please title and caption these images individually, indicating their relevance to your proposal. No word limit requirement

For more details about fees and how to pay them, please see the  fees & finance  pages.

There are several routes open to candidates seeking PhD funding, including:

Student Loans

If you’re from the UK or the EU, you may be eligible to take out a PhD loan from the UK government. For more information about this loan see:

Our PhD Studentships

Our student support fund

UCA runs an additional student support fund for research degree students, providing up to £300 per student per year to support research costs such as specialist external training, attendance at conferences, or the cost of staging an exhibition of practice work for your Final Examination.

Innovative Practice-Based Creative Research

Explore the rich and diverse range of approaches to practice research across all areas of creativity and the many ways in which it may be realised

Creative Arts Therapies Explained: 18 Best Courses and Ideas

Creative Arts Therapies

In ancient Greece and Rome, participation in theater acts was “prescribed” for individuals with depression or anxiety.

Likewise, tribal communities around the globe have been using dance, music, and painting in healing for millennia (Degges-White, 2011).

If you’re interested in taking the next step in your career to become a creative arts therapist, look no further. In this article, we’ll give you a basic introduction to the field of creative arts therapies, recommend some training options, and point you toward our favorite resources you can use with your art therapy clients today.

Before you continue reading, we thought you might like to download our three Grief Exercises [PDF] for free . These science-based tools will help you move yourself or others through grief in a compassionate way.

This Article Contains:

What are creative arts therapies, a brief history of creative arts therapies, how to become a creative arts therapist, training options: 9 courses and degrees, 5 best online programs to consider, how to use creative arts in counseling, top 4 activities and ideas for your sessions, helpful resources from, a take-home message.

Creative arts therapies (CATs) involve

“the implementation of an arts intervention by a trained, credentialed creative arts therapist; the presence of a systematic psychotherapeutic process; and the use of individualized treatment interventions.”

Bradt & Goodill, 2013, p. 970

Like other therapies, CATs address patients’ specific therapeutic issues and include the phases of patient assessment , treatment, and evaluation. Further, CAT interventions can consist of a broad range of artistic practices, including (Bradt & Goodill, 2013):

CAT differs from more general art-related healthcare practices in that CAT practitioners should be licensed and accredited.

Another difference is that more general art-related healthcare practices encompass a broad continuum of care, and the patient may play a more or less active role in the performance or creation of the art.

For instance, a performance put on by a group of artists for a patient would fall under the broader umbrella of general art-related healthcare but not be considered CAT, which centers around patient involvement as part of a targeted psychotherapeutic intervention.

According to the American Psychological Association (Winerman, 2005), modern CATs first emerged in the United States during the 1940s and 50s. Before then, the different CAT interventions were largely considered separate therapies.

When did it begin?

Founded in 1855, St. Elizabeths Hospital’s Department of Behavioral Health in Washington, D.C., had pioneering campuses in the therapeutic fields of art, music, dance, bibliotherapy, and psychodrama, and is widely considered to be the birthplace of CAT.

Marian Chace, a dancer and therapist born in Rhode Island, believed that dance was a powerful medium through which humans could meet their essential need for communication and understanding (Winerman, 2005). She is recognized as one of the first to use dance to meet the needs of patients with severe mental health challenges, practicing at St. Elizabeths Hospital in the 1940s after observing the positive effects that movement could have on symptoms of trauma (Sandel, Chaiklin, & Lohn, 1993).

A key figure in the founding of the American Dance Therapy Association, Chace ultimately became the Association’s first president and has left a long legacy of dignity and compassion in her work.

Arleen Hynes, a librarian and bibliotherapist at St. Elizabeths, discovered that inviting her patients to relate to poems resulted in evocative and creative responses that expressed their inner lives (Winerman, 2005; Rossiter, 2004). She began focusing on literature that stimulated the imagination rather than on narratives and trained herself to conduct therapy with poetry (Lamb & Friday, 2006).

Over 10 years at St. Elizabeths, Hynes went from running small evening classes to helping establish the National Association for Poetry Therapy. She then went on to receive several awards and publish a widely acclaimed handbook on biblio/poetry therapy (Hynes & Hynes-Berry, 2011).

Becoming an Arts Therapist

The minimum qualifications for conducting any form of therapy involve different supervised internship hours and accreditation requirements.

To learn more, be sure to look at our dedicated article How to Become a Therapist: Requirements, Degrees, & Experience  or consider purchasing our in-depth guide, On Becoming a Therapist .

The standard pathway for becoming a CAT typically proceeds as follows (New York Health Careers, n.d.):

Interested in being trained as a creative arts therapist? Here are some of the degree options around the world.

Bachelor’s degrees

The following bachelor’s programs are recommended entry points for learning about CAT. They do not fully prepare students for licensure or certification to practice CAT, as this requires a minimum of a master’s degree.

The University of Tampa – Bachelor of Arts in Art Therapy, USA


This BA program gives students a well-rounded introduction to the therapeutic arts, teaching its applications for working with a range of intrapsychic phenomena.

Particular applications include the use of arts for personal growth, rehabilitation, and self-awareness .

The program includes topics on the following art mediums:

You can learn more on the program’s website .

University of South Wales – Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Creative and Therapeutic Arts, Australia

South Wales

This bachelor’s program allows students to develop their future practice as a CAT in community and educational settings.

Across three years, students will learn innovative creative and therapeutic arts methods through art practice placements and theory-related skill building from leading experts.

Placement opportunities include those in community settings, such as women’s centers and children’s play therapy settings.

Find out more on the program’s website .

Ikon Institute of Australia – Bachelor of Arts Therapy, Australia


This undergraduate program gives students a broad knowledge of psychotherapy and therapeutic skills while emphasizing the processes of art therapy.

In particular, students will practice the artistic modes of:

For electives, students can choose topics including eco-psychotherapy, art and social action, indigenous approaches to health and wellbeing, and dreams and symbols.

Master’s degrees

The following is a sample of accredited master’s programs designed to prepare students for licensure and certification as a CAT.

Pratt Institute – Creative Arts Therapy Graduate Degrees, USA


New York’s Pratt Institute is a global leader in higher education, offering two accredited graduate degrees in CATs.

The Master of Professional Studies in Art Therapy and Creativity Development is an accredited 60-credit program synthesizing creative, aesthetic decision-making and psychotherapeutic practice and theory through experiential learning.

The Master of Science in Dance/Movement Therapy is structured similarly but emphasizes dance/movement as the means for therapeutic change based on the healing processes proposed by psychodynamic theory .

You can learn more about these programs on the institute’s website .

Leeds Beckett University – Master of Art Psychotherapy Practice, UK

Leeds Beckett

This program, run in partnership with Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust, is designed to meet the national training criteria to practice and register as an art therapist or art psychotherapist in the United Kingdom.

Training focuses on developing students’ ability to deliver safe and effective care using visual art and image making. It also gives students access to work placements in a broad range of settings, including general hospitals, disability services, and forensics.

You can learn more on the program’s website or by viewing the program’s course overview .

University of Melbourne – Master of Creative Arts Therapy, Australia


This two-year degree program provides an overview of theories related to health treatment involving the arts, which can be applied in a range of contexts.

Students will learn about contemporary practices in the field of art therapy and explore the similarities, differences, and differing effects of various art forms.

Several Australian licensure bodies accredit the program for CAT and connect students with a broad range of placement opportunities.

You can learn more on the University of Melbourne’s website .

Doctoral programs

Note that the following doctoral programs are designed to help students pursue a nonclinical career or expand on other programs’ clinical licenses. They do not prepare graduates for clinical licensure or certification.

Saybrook University – PhD in Psychology: Creativity Studies Specialization, USA


In this doctoral program, students will discover the value of nurturing creativity to help achieve health and organizational outcomes.

In particular, students will learn to analyze and conduct psychological research while strengthening their skills to work in a range of public, private, and nonprofit sectors, such as the arts, health, consulting, and social transformation.

To learn more, visit the program’s website .

Florida State University – PhD or EdD in Art Education: Concentration in Art Therapy, USA


The art education PhD or EdD at Florida State teaches students the skills to make substantial academic contributions to the field of art therapy, with many of this program’s students making major contributions to the literature in faculties and colleges around the United States.

In particular, students of this program will gain the skills to teach, lead research teams, publish and present findings, engage in advanced clinical practice, and develop art therapy education programs.

To learn more, visit the program’s website or view the College of Fine Art’s handbook .

University of Haifa – School of Creative Arts Therapies Doctoral Programs, Israel


Israel’s School of Creative Arts Therapies at the University of Haifa offers creative arts therapy PhD programs with the following specializations:

These programs are designed to train students in the skills to forward research in CAT, focusing on theory development, evidence-based practice , and basic and applied research.

You can learn more about these programs and get contact information by visiting the program’s website and downloading their information leaflet .

For even more programs and information, be sure to take a look at the American Art Therapy Association’s website .

If you’re looking to complete a university-level qualification in CAT, know that many programs have online or blended modes of instruction. To get the latest information on the availability of these online options, we recommend reaching out to advisors at your chosen college or university.

Edinboro University – Master of Arts in Counseling, USA


Edinboro University in Pennsylvania is one of the few universities worldwide offering a 100%-online master’s program in art counseling.

The program is accredited and provides students with a solid theoretical and practical foundation upon which to build your own art counseling practice.

Students are invited to select a practicum opportunity and internship in a specialty area of their choice in their local community. This course can also be taken as an abbreviated post-master’s certificate by those who already have a master’s in a related field and are looking to expand an existing skill set.

You can learn more about this program and its offerings on Edinboro University’s website .

Certificates and diplomas

If you’re looking to dip a toe in the field of creative arts therapy or expand an existing skill set, consider the following online training options:

Just as the arts have taken hold in therapy, there are many avenues to apply the arts in counseling. Further, there are often many advantages to doing so.

Here are just a few ways you might use creative arts to support the clients of your counseling practice (Degges-White, 2011):

Overall, creative arts can help counselors move beyond simply talking to discover innovative pathways to achieving a client’s goals.

For more useful resources, look at the books Integrating the Expressive Arts Into Counseling Practice by Suzanne Degges-White and Nancy Davis and The Creative Arts in Counseling by Samuel Gladding. Also check out our article Expressive Arts Therapy: 15 Creative Activities and Techniques which is specifically dedicated to Expressive Art Therapy.

For useful ideas for your next creative arts therapy session, consider the following free worksheets:

For even more ideas, be sure to check out our dedicated blog posts exploring therapy via the visual arts , movement , narrative , drama , and music.

For even more useful ideas, consider checking out the many resources available through the Positive Psychology Toolkit© . This toolkit contains over 400 carefully developed tools to support your therapy or counseling practice, with many templates centering on the creative arts.

Here, we illustrate one activity from this resource as an example of the way color and creativity can be used to strengthen understanding of links between the body and one’s emotions.

Visualizing the Bodily Experience of an Emotion

This exercise aims to increase emotional awareness by inviting clients to explore and draw their emotions in the body.

For a done-for-you version of this activity, including facilitation instructions and printable templates, be sure to take a look at the Positive Psychology Toolkit© .

Additionally, if you’re looking for more science-based ways to help others enhance their wellbeing, check out this signature collection of 17 validated positive psychology tools for practitioners . Use them to help others flourish and thrive.

CAT is a well-established yet growing practice, and demand for therapists trained in CAT may well increase.

At the core of creative arts therapy is a focus on the act of creating art rather than the final product. By emphasizing this focus, practitioners can give clients opportunities for self-expression and discovery of unseen parts of themselves, making the shift to a creative medium or mode often worth it.

We hope this article has inspired you to consider a career in creative arts therapy or to begin integrating artistic practices into the care you provide. If you know of any other resources or avenues for training in this field, be sure to let us know in the comments – we’d love to hear from you.

We hope you enjoyed reading this article. Don’t forget to download our three Grief Exercises [PDF] for free .

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Karis Anders

Unfortunately this profession is not regulated here in Australia. It is a good overview, however, it is disappointing to see undergraduate programs listed, which are expensive and are not the international minimum standard to become an art therapist, and that you have left out The University of Queensland’s (School of Medicine/Department of Psychiatry) Master of Mental Health-Art Therapy, which is a highly regarded post-graduate program.

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creative arts phd

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University Catalog 2022-23

Catalog Home > Graduate Catalog > College of Nursing and Health Professions > Creative Arts Therapies PhD

Creative Arts Therapies PhD

Major: Creative Arts Therapies Degree Awarded: Doctor of Philosophy Calendar Type: Quarter Minimum Required Credits: 45.0 Co-op Option : None Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 51.2399 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code: 29-1129

The PhD in Creative Arts Therapies is a research degree program for art therapists, dance/movement therapists, and music therapists who are interested in pursuing advanced scholarship and assuming academic leadership in their discipline. The primary mission of the program is the cultivation of scholars and academic leaders in the creative arts therapies who can:

The PhD program consists of four interactive learning modules plus a dissertation:

The professions of art therapy, dance/movement therapy, and music therapy have grown and become increasingly integrated as interventions in healthcare, education, and human services. Implicit in the emergent growth and integration of these professions is our responsibility to evaluate existing and develop new evidence-based theories and clinical practices. The mission of the PhD in Creative Arts Therapies is to generate, critically evaluate, and disseminate research to address this need and ultimately to advance the knowledge and evidence bases for these professions. Consequently, we have identified the following core values central to our research agenda.

Stewardship and scholarship in the Creative Arts Therapies includes:

Additional Information

For more information about the program, visit the College of Nursing and Health Professions'  PhD in Creative Arts Therapies  webpage.

Students are permitted to take up to two additional courses from RSCH 700-899, NPH 700-899 or IPS 700-899.

Dissertation Sequence: Students are required to complete the following courses: CATX 804 , which focuses upon choosing a research topic for the dissertation; CATX 805 , with faculty advisement, the student writes the dissertation proposal; CATX 806 , the student revises the dissertation proposal based upon the results of the Dissertation Proposal Defense and collects the data; and CATX 807 , the final stages of the dissertation in which the student analyzes the data, writes the final dissertation, and completes the oral defense. Courses in this sequence can be repeated multiple times until the stage of the dissertation process is complete for each course, and students must complete each course in the sequence. A minimum of 4 credits is required.

All electives must be graduate courses and can be selected from those courses offered at Drexel University. In particular, doctoral-level courses in the College of Nursing and Health Professions, School of Public Health, College of Arts and Sciences, and/or the School of Education may be the most relevant to students in this program. (The Creative Arts Therapies PhD program director will obtain permission for the student to take the elective from the relevant dean of the College or School and the relevant program director and course instructor.)

Content areas that are acceptable for electives include the following: anthropology, biology, creativity, culture and communication, ethics, health psychology, literature, neuroanatomy, neuropsychology, philosophy, psychology, psychoanalysis, sociology, and advanced statistics. Additional content areas may be added by special request as approved by the supervising faculty advisor and program director.

Dissertation Sequence: Students are required to complete the following courses: CATX 804, which focuses upon choosing a research topic for the dissertation; CATX 805, with faculty advisement, the student writes the dissertation proposal; CATX 806, the student revises the dissertation proposal based upon the results of the Dissertation Proposal Defense and collects the data; and CATX 807, the final stages of the dissertation in which the student analyzes the data, writes the final dissertation, and completes the oral defense. Courses in this sequence can be repeated multiple times until the stage of the dissertation process is complete for each course, and students must complete each course in the sequence. A minimum of 4 credits is required.

Schedule of Classes

Writing-intensive Requirements

In order to graduate, all students must pass three writing-intensive courses after their freshman year. Two writing-intensive courses must be in a student's major. The third can be in any discipline. Students are advised to take one writing-intensive class each year, beginning with the sophomore year, and to avoid “clustering” these courses near the end of their matriculation. Transfer students need to meet with an academic advisor to review the number of writing-intensive courses required to graduate.

For additional information, and an up-to-date list of the writing-intensive courses being offered, students should check the Drexel University Writing Center page

creative arts phd

Creative Arts Therapy Counseling

creative arts phd

Be Licensure Ready in as Little as Two Years

Begin a rewarding career in art therapy with the CAAHEP-accredited Master of Arts (MA) in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling at Hofstra University. Our program features new and refined courses in ethics, diversity, aging and development, career counseling, and experiential learning, including a first-year practicum. Hofstra prepares you for licensure in New York State as a Creative Arts Therapist and as a registered and board-certified Art Therapist. Attend full-time and finish in as little as two years or attend part-time and complete the program in three years. No GRE is required, and scholarships are available for qualified candidates.

creative arts phd

Request Info

I am interested in learning more about Hofstra’s MA in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling.

Program Highlights

creative arts phd

Expert Faculty


CAAHEP Accredited

creative arts phd

Diverse Electives

creative arts phd

Real-World Experience

creative arts phd

Exceptional Location

creative arts phd

Competitive Tuition

Program details.

creative arts phd

Visit the Hofstra campus or connect with the graduate admission team. We will answer your questions and put you in touch with program faculty or degree candidates to learn more. Contact us at [email protected] , or call 516-463-4723.

To be considered for the MA in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling program, you must have completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution. You must demonstrate competency in art by presenting slides, original artwork, or a CD presentation; have 18 semester hours minimum in studio art, including drawing, painting, and 3D art; and 12 semester hours in psychology, including developmental and abnormal.

Start your application online where you can upload the following documents:

Visit the creative arts therapy counseling program page to learn more.

The preferred application deadline for the fall semester is August 15 and for the spring semester is January 15. All others will be reviewed based on available space.

The MA in Creative Arts Therapy Counseling is awarded to students who successfully complete 60 hours of coursework.

Deepen your education by getting involved in professional art therapy and related organizations, including:

Faculty Profiles

Deborah l. elkis-abuhoff.

creative arts phd

Dr. Deborah Elkis-Abuhoff, Associate Professor of Counseling and Mental Health Professions, holds both psychology and creative arts therapy licenses in New York state. Her research interests bring together behavioral medicine and creative arts therapy/medical art therapy, allowing her to bring diverse, up-to-date information to students. Her recent research includes the use of clay manipulation with individuals diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.

Take the Next Step

How to apply.

creative arts phd

IEATA International Expressive Arts Therapy Association ®


Doctorate Degree

*Please note this information is not being updated. A new education and training directory is being created with  searchable function to view: ​



CAMBRIDGE, MA Ph.D. in Expressive Therapies ​

CONTACT [email protected]




PhD in Psychology with a Specialization in Expressive Arts Therapy

Online Program

CONTACT [email protected]

[email protected]


SWITZERLAND Doctoral Program in Expressive Arts:

Therapy, Coaching, Consulting and Education, Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding

Low-Residency Program During Summers


+41 27 474 99 17

+41 27 474 99 18

Note: Affiliated with Appalachian State University (Keith M. Davis at  [email protected] ). Programs exchange/transfer academic credits. In Europe, affiliated with Hochschule fur Musik und Theater in Hamburg, Germany(Gabriele Bastians at [email protected] )



Doctorate in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Expressive Arts, Leadership, and Inquiry  

The concentration in Expressive Arts, Leadership, and Inquiry will equip doctoral students with enhanced discernment and imagination that enriches leadership work across the spectrum of pK-20. Students in this concentration will become leaders using multi-modal expressive arts theory and inquiry to promote human flourishing,

View Graduate Bulletin for more details about course requirements.

For further information about the expressive arts program and other related resources, please visit or email us at [email protected]

Dr. Audrey Dentith

Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership Director and Professor Phone: 828-262-8382 [email protected]  


MAKAWAO, MAUI, HI PhD in Expressive Arts Therapy (two to four years, depending on Academic Study Plan and preparation of Doctorate Dissertation)

Program established in 1994 includes multi-modal expressive arts and exploration of each modality

CONTACT Elise Kert, Registrar, 800-806-0317, 808-573-7722 fax

[email protected][email protected] OR  Alessandra Colfi, Assistant to the Director, Expressive Arts Therapy Department

[email protected]


199 Aba Khoushy Av. Mount Carmel, Haifa, 31905, Israel

Two year training in Hebrew, offering MA in Creative Arts Therapies with a concentration in Art Therapy, Drama Therapy, Psychodrama, Music Therapy, or Dance/Movement Therapy. PhD at the School of Creative Arts Therapies


Phone:   +(972)4.824.9750

Contact: Dr. Hod Orkibi, PhD,  [email protected]

creative arts phd

The International Expressive Arts Therapy Association® (IEATA®) provides these resources as a courtesy for those interested in exploring the expressive arts. IEATA® assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of this information. IEATA® is not connected with any listed organization and does not endorse any educational institution as an official expressive arts training program. Individuals seeking a career in the expressive arts are encouraged to seek appropriate counseling from the institution of their choice. IEATA® and its representatives are not able to provide recommendations for any of these programs. If you know of a program or school that could be added to our listing, please contact the  Educational Resources Committee

University of Brighton

Banner illustrating research through arts practice shows a close up photograph of a right hand and, across from it, a pen drawing a representation of it.

Art and creative practices PhD

The University of Brighton is a creative and intellectually vibrant focus for a PhD in art and creative practices.

The School of Art and Media in Brighton has a long history of internationally-recognised work, has been a pioneer of practice-based and inter-disciplinary methods, and joins with other disciplinary areas to offer expert supervision.  

Past successes in PhD in Art and Creative Practices at the University of Brighton include PhDs in the areas of fine art, illustration, graphic design, visual communication, photography and film, digital and interactive arts, 3D design and craft, fashion and textiles, design and communication, drawing on the staff of different schools and sharing a creative vision and ethos that permeates the whole university.

Apply to 'Arts' on our PhD portal

Apply with us for funding through the AHRC Techne Doctoral Training Partnership

Key information

As an Art and Creative Practices PhD student, you will benefit from

Academic environment

Our research and enterprise has, at its heart, an engagement with making and critical thinking that brings together creative inquiry, experimentation with material, process and technology with theory and critical writing. It provides new ways of understanding creative processes that offer insights into cultural and human emotion, thought and action.

Research activities within Art and Creative Practices include the production of innovative artefacts, both digital and physical, design, craft, inclusive practices, exhibitions, installation and performance, as well as creative writing, published texts, books and journal articles. Characterised by a blend of scholarship, knowledge exchange, traditional and cutting-edge practices, our research has been influential in collaborative developments with diverse communities and partners locally, nationally and internationally. It is our belief that knowledge generated through the development of creative and critical practice enhances and shapes every aspect of our contemporary culture and future lives.

We promote research excellence and support individual and collaborative research initiatives that through productive enterprise networks help to enhance society’s understanding of human culture and creativity. 

We welcome applications for PhD study in which practice plays a central role, as well as those applications that bring elements of practice into a more traditional thesis submission. As a research student, you will part of a community of learning with active participation in a range of intellectual and social events. All PhD students working on arts-based topics are integrated into the university’s wider research culture and we will provide you with opportunities to present ‘work in progress’ and network with other researchers.

Research themes in Art and Creative Practices

Researchers within the School of Art and Media are engaged in arts practice work across a wide range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary areas and, along with specialists in the history and theory of art, design, literature, creative writing and autoethnography from the School of Humanities and Social Science, and wider engagement with schools specialising across the sciences, we encourage interdisciplinary projects and cross-disciplinary engagements. Our particular areas of specialism currently include:

Explore our Centres of Research and Enterprise Excellence:

Some of our supervisory staff 

Gavin ambrose.

My supervisory interests lie in the development of new approaches to Graphic Design pedagogy. I have expertise in typography, printing, editorial design and graphic systems and conventions. I'm especially interested in the emergence of new approaches to the landscape of contemporary Graphic Design practice and how the role of the Graphic Design has shifted towards a bricoleur approach to contempory communication. Graphic Design is a pervasive subject that is integrated in our daily lives, but arguably the subject of little critical enquiry. An emerging research community and unified research clustering is beginning to address this shortfall, and Doctorate Level study will help to further this body of knowledge.

I am interested in supervising on enquries into:

• Graphic Design practice, both as an act of creation but also as a force for change;

• The changing topography of the Graphic Design landscape, and the changes to the 'role' of the graphic Designer as a contemporary communicator and creator;

• Shifts in typographic practice and relationships of Graphic Design to the broader influences of social and economic factors including globalisation and homogenisation;

• The role of communication as an emerging research practice;

• Self regulation and ‘rule’ or convention generation with in the industry;

• The role of ‘play’ and ‘failure’ in design Graphic Design practice, and in particular how these actions are navigated and understood by learners and educators;

• The emergence of alternative, less formal approaches to education and the role of the ‘Art School’ in this developing landscape.

Dr Martin Bouette

My work investigates the role of entrepreneurship in the development of creative careers as a business owner and researcher. This has included investigating the gap between education and employment for creative practitioners as well as exploring models of learning to support entrepreneurial development.

Current and recent PhD students:

Martin Irorere -  Sustainability in making material innovation in textiles, or the circular model in the fashion industry (2021 - present) 

Erika Wong – Investigating the career progression of Art graduates (2016 – 2020) Brighton University

Veerapong Klangpremjit – Interactive Packaging Development (2014 – 2020) University for the Creative Arts

Akapan Thienthaworn – Design Management in UK and Thai SMEs (2011 – 2019) University for the Creative Arts (completed)

Duncan Bullen

Duncan's supervisory interests cover a range of Fine Art and practice-based research with the use of drawing being central to his concerns. He has a particular interest in non-representational and meditative approaches to drawing and theory to research aspects of phenomenology, lived experience and arts health/wellbeing related subjects.

Amy Cunningham

My supervisory interests include fine art, video, multi-media installation, sound, voice, performance, site-specific art and cultural histories of technology.

As mentor on the MA Fine Art she is able to draw on her experience of working as an artist advisor on the ARC scheme, which was originally set up by Aspex Gallery in Portsmouth. As Artist Advisor she was responsible for delivering personal 121 mentoring to over 450 artists within the South East of England over several years. This work gave her a view into the working lives of those artists and an understanding of the conditions and challenges that running a fine art career brings with it. 

She has also supervised and been an examiner on the Masters in Research (School of Art). 

From 2003 - 2005 she was Course Leader on the ArCH Programme (Arts and Cultural Heritage) post-graduate course. 

Dr Jules Findley

I am interested in postgraduate supervision in Textiles, Fashion, Fashion Communication, Drawing, encompassing embodied materiality, my work in handmade paper and practice-based, installation art. More recently,  substantial research as co-investigator with an AHRC project in  sustainabile materials, I am interested in waste in the Fashion, Textiles, Accessories and Leather industries, together with materials, circular economy and repurposing.  

Recent PhD supervision:

University of Brighton - Martin Irorere - Research Title: 'Closing the Fashion Sustainability Gap through textile Recycling: Evaluation of UK Gen-Z consumer attitudes, knowledge, and acceptance of textile recycling'. - [March 2021 - present]

Anglia Ruskin University - Amanda Lavis - Research Title: 'Woven Language: A practice-based research investigation Exploring the Textile Praxis in Children's Book Illustration' [March 2021 - expected completion 2024]

External PhD Viva examination experience, University of Chester October 2020 - Georgina Spry -  'A New Felt Presence: Making and Learning as part of a Community of Women Feltmakers' 

Doctoral student supervision and examination

Meaningfully Engaged? Exploring the particpatory arts practices of adults with profound and multiplul learning disabilities (PMLD)  PhD Thesis by Melaneia Warwick completed in 2018

External examiner, Royal Holloway, Janyne Lloyd, PhD thesis title The Role of Reminiscence Arts in the Lives of Care Home Residents Living with Dementia 2016

Dr Charlotte Gould

My PhD supervisory interests are in Digital Media Arts and Visual Communication. My specific research interests cover interactive storytelling, augmented reality, digital and tangible media,  open interaction, play, participation, immersive environments, virtual reality and 360 video, audience agency and sustainability.

Dr Ole Hagen

In addition to fine art practice, I'm interested in consciousness studies, philosophy of mind, ontology and religious stuies such as Buddhist philosophy. My own PhD covered continental thought, such as phenomenology, poststructuralism, Derrida and Deleuze, but also philosophy of science.

Dr Asa Johannesson

I am interested in supervising PhD and MRes students in the following areas: feminist photographic practices and theories, queer methodologies, queer photographic practices and theories, queer activism and representation, New Materialism, Posthumanism, photography and ontology, non-dialectical contemporary philosophy, process-led photographic research. 

Dr Helen Johnson

Helen supervises PhD and MD students with an interest in arts-based interventions in healthcare, education and wellbeing, and/or the use of creative, arts-based research methods.  She is interested in talking to doctoral applicants who are interested in researching creativity and the arts, with foci including: art therapy; arts interventions for health and wellbeing, including invisible chronic and contested conditions; social prescribing; creativity and the lived experience of dementia; arts education; spoken word and poetry slam; art worlds/communities; arts inclusivity; everyday creativity; and the artistic process.   She is also interested in supervising students who wish to work with creative, arts-based and/or participatory methods, including: poetic inquiry; autoethnography; photo voice; photo elicitation; collaborative poetics; and participatory action research.  Helen currently supervises four doctoral candidates, who are researching: the lived experiences of women with borderline personality disorder (including creative coping strategies); neurologic music therapy with young people with juvenile dementia; black people's experiences of intimacy and psychosis; and decolonial praxis in museum learning.  She has previously supervised and examined work covering topics that include: perceptions of frailty in the undergraduate medical curriculum; the impact of austerity policies on homeless people; spoken word with young offenders in a Macedonian prison; the performance and perception of authenticity in contemporary UK spoken word poetry; and NHS staff experiences of work. 

Dr Claudia Kappenberg

My supervisory interests lie in moving image, live and interdisciplinary performance practices and screendance, as well as the historical and theoretical narratives which underpin these practices, such as performance philosophy and concepts of body-mind integration, questions of representation, as well as contemporary debates on neoliberalist politics and their impact on the artist and artistic production.

My expertise is in practice-based PhDs and in interdisciplinary practices and discourses. My own PhD explored the notion of uselessness as a strategy for contemporary performance practices, and considered historical debates on use and uselessness particularly within French philosophical and literary traditions, drawing on the writing of Catherine Clément and Georges Bataille.

Dr Uschi Klein

Dr Uschi Klein is interested in supervising PhDs in the broad areas of photographic histories and practices, visual and material culture, resistance politics, cultural memory and marginalised communities. She is especially but not exclusively interested in supervising research projects that focus on the lived experience of Eastern European totalitarian systems.

Dr Jayne Lloyd

Jayne is interested supervising practice-based PhD research into collaborative or participatory arts practices with marginalised groups, arts in health and social care settings, arts-research and arts practices located in both gallery and community settings.

Dr Philippa Lyon

My main supervisory interests are in the understanding and applications of drawing in clinical settings, the use of drawing as a tool of learning, approaches to arts/health research, the relationship between drawing and writing and creative/visual research methods.

I am currently supervising three PhD students: Vanessa Marr, with Jessica Moriarty;  Caehryn Tinker, with Kay Aranda; and James Murray, with Duncan Bullen and Gavin Fry. I also act as a mentor for a PhD student and as an external adviser to Dr Sam Murton, a GP and doctoral student looking at drawing and health literacy in the University of Otago, New Zealand.

I have supervised 4 PhD students to completion: Dr Simon Bliss, Jewellery, Silver and the Applied and Decorative Arts in the Culture of Modernism, 2019; Dr Gavin Fry, Male textile artists in 1980s Britain: a practice based inquiry into their reasons for using this medium, 2018; Dr Curie Scott, Elucidating perceptions of ageing through participatory drawing: a phenomenographic approach, 2018; Dr Sarah Haybittle, Correspondence, trace and the landscape of narrative: a visual, verbal and literary dialectic, 2015.

I have been an independent chair for a PhD examination (Andrew Cross) and have examined six PhDs: Jane Shepard, University of Brighton, 2022 (internal examiner); Melissa Cheung, University of Sydney, Australia, 2019 (external examiner); Louisa Buck, University of Brighton, 2018 (internal examiner); Samantha Lynch, University of Brighton, 2018 (internal examiner); Mike Sadd, University of Brighton, August 2015 (internal examiner); Tanja Golja, University of Technology Sydney, Australia, January 2012 (external examiner).

I've acted as internal examiner for three MRes students: Claire Scanlon, 2019; Diana Brighouse, 2015; and Mark Lander, 2014.

I have also been an independent reader for MPhil/PhD transfers and Annual Progression Review reader for 4 students.

Roderick Mills

My supervisory interests cover the emerging areas of Illustration as an expanded field of practice including GIFs, animation, and the burgeoning self-publishing scene, through to traditional forms of graphic storytelling. I am interested in enquiries into situated illustration, both in terms of site specific work and ethnographic approaches, to how illustrators can use technology to go beyond the printed page. The importance of drawing as means of enquiry is another interest alongside performative aspects of live transcriptions and the use of workshops to engage with communities.

Dr Jessica Moriarty

One of my key passions is working with PhD students on creative practice, autoethnography and creative writing pedagogy. I have supported doctoral students working on transdisciplinary projects and work that seeks to challenge conventional academic discourse. At the moment, I am honoured to be working with students who are looking at queering the colonial, creativity and Bronte, Santiago de Cuba as moving archive, diverse narratives from Brexit, feminist romance, autoethnographic arts-based work, stories from care, autoethno-drag, identity and hybridity in fiction, and queer bodies in performance.

Xavier Ribas

Xavier Ribas is interested in developing postgraduate research in the following areas: contested sites and histories, legacies of colonialism, border territories, geographies of extraction, environmentalism, climate justice, art and activism. 

Dr Naomi Salaman

Contemporary art 

Contemporary art and labour

Contemprorary art and social movements

Contemporary art and feminist perspectives

The history of vision

The Art School; art education; art theory.

Prof Paul Sermon

My research and supervisory interests cover Fine Art, Digital Media, Performance and Visual Communications related subjects. Since joining the University of Brighton in 2013 I have taken on six PhD students as their lead supervisor, with completions in May 2016, March 2018 and April 2019. These PhD students have been undertaking practice-based research in a range of specific areas such as digital storytelling, interactive media, virtual reality and networked performance art. In my role as a PhD supervisor and Postgraduate Research Coordinator in the School of Art I bring our PhD students together through collaborative workshops, symposia and exhibitions, such as the group PhD show ‘Digital Encounters’ for the British Science Festival, Brighton in September 2017. I have had six PhD completions as lead supervisor to date, as well as two external completions and I continue to gain PhD Viva experience, with over thirteen PhD external examiner appointments.

Emma Stibbon

My supervisory interests are writing the field of Fine Art, specialising in drawing and printmaking. My research is rooted in landscape, focusing on environments that are undergoing change and transformation. I undertake this through field-based research, frequently in dialogue with scientists. 

For further supervisory staff including cross-disciplinary options, please visit research staff on our research website.  

Making an application

You will apply to the University of Brighton through our online application portal. When you do, you will require a research proposal, references, a personal statement and a record of your education.

You will be asked whether you have discussed your research proposal and your suitability for doctoral study with a member of the University of Brighton staff. We recommend that all applications are made with the collaboration of at least one potential supervisor. Approaches to potential supervisors can be made directly through the details available online. If you are unsure, please do contact the Doctoral College for advice.

Please visit our How to apply for a PhD page for detailed information.

Sign in to our online application portal to begin.

Fees and funding

Undertaking research study will require university fees as well as support for your research activities and plans for subsistence during full or part-time study.

Funding sources include self-funding, funding by an employer or industrial partners; there are competitive funding opportunities available in most disciplines through, for example, our own university studentships or national (UK) research councils. International students may have options from either their home-based research funding organisations or may be eligible for some UK funds.

Learn more about the funding opportunities available to you.

Tuition fees academic year 2022–23

Standard fees are listed below, but may vary depending on subject area. Some subject areas may charge bench fees/consumables; this will be decided as part of any offer made. Fees for UK and international/EU students on full-time and part-time courses are likely to incur a small inflation rise each year of a research programme.

Contact Brighton Doctoral College

To contact the Doctoral College at the University of Brighton we request an email in the first instance. Please visit our contact the Brighton Doctoral College page .

For supervisory contact, please see individual profile pages.

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creative arts phd

Expressive and Creative Arts

Get started.

Salve Regina University’s graduate certificate program in expressive and creative arts inspires positive transformation through the arts and creative expression. Our vibrant program trains counselors, therapists, social workers, educators, artists, wellness practitioners and workshop leaders to integrate the expressive and creative arts with the helping professions.

Change the World Through the Arts

Our graduate certificate program uses a holistic, multi-modal approach to the professional application of the expressive and creative arts, concentrating on an integration of visual arts with movement, sound, theater arts and expressive writing. Through guided study and hands-on experiential work, students gain the skills needed to practice the expressive and creative arts in counseling, therapy, education, health care, community organizing or any profession in which personal expression and creative development are essential.

Courses are available at our Newport campus and are offered in an innovative hybrid format, featuring intensive weekend workshops accompanied by independent study modules to further assimilate the learning and practice.

Expressive Arts Institute

Course Requirements

Our faculty.

Program Brochure

Staff and Contact

Call us at: (800) 637-0002

Program Director: Christopher Carbone

creative arts phd

Discover the Difference at Salve Regina

Learn on your terms.

Our low-residency format honors the demands on your time. Expressive and creative arts courses are available in an innovative hybrid model that combines weekend immersion workshops with independent study modules to further assimilate learning and practice.

Wide-Ranging Applications

Through hands-on experiential work, highly personalized advising and dedicated vocational planning, Salve Regina’s expressive and creative arts program supports students as they elevate their career aspirations in a wide range of helping professions.

Deepen Your Fulfillment

Using a holistic and multi-modal approach, Salve Regina’s vibrant program integrates the expressive and creative arts with the helping professions, emphasizing research and practice to give graduate a more complete toolbox to guide and inspire others.

Salve Regina's graduate certificate in expressive and creative arts is designed for practitioners who hold a bachelor’s or master’s degree and are seeking continued professional development. To create a synergistic dual training in expressive arts therapy and clinical mental health counseling, students may co-enroll in one of our graduate programs in counseling. Students with a bachelor's degree pursue the Certificate of Graduate Studies, while students with a master's degree and students who are co-enrolled in one of our master's degree programs pursue the Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies.

Required courses:

Students who wish to enter the program complete three foundation courses or attend the Expressive Arts Institute , a three-weekend, non-credit training course in the professional applications of the expressive and creative arts.

Foundation courses:

HLC535: Introduction to Expressive Sound and Music

Hlc582: introduction to expressive and creative arts as transformation, hlc584: movement, creativity and consciousness: an introduction, hlc604: self discovery through the expressive and creative arts, hlc610: expressive theater arts and movement: a multi-modal approach to creativity and transformation, hlc611: group applications of the expressive and creative arts, hlc613: expressive writing for personal growth and transformation, hlc615: utilizing expressive sound/music and theater arts for creativity and healing.

This course offers an introduction to the uses of expressive sound and music as a vehicle for growth and transformation. Through exercises and discussion, this course explores how expressive sound can be utilized to help release tensions, express emotions and calm the nervous system. Class experiences draw upon various sound-based modalities, including breathing practices, vocal toning, deep listening, rhythm explorations and improvisation as part of an intermodal expressive arts approach. This course also introduces ways to adapt and utilize these practices with others in a variety of professional settings.

This course explores the expressive and creative arts as a therapeutic and educational tool for transformation, self-discovery, physical healing and the evolution of consciousness. Using the body-mind’s inner language of imagery, students learn how to access, release and transform nonverbal sensate impressions of feelings and emotions through a variety of integrative arts processes. Through hands-on exercises, students begin to recognize the difference between verbal and imagistic expression, and how that recognition can help resolve conflicts between thoughts and feelings. This course also introduces ways to utilize the transformative process with others in a variety of professional settings.

This course introduces a variety of experiences to help students to develop a clearer understanding of the body/mind/spirit connection; to increase awareness of the creative, psychological and spiritual potential as revealed through the body; and to develop an understanding of each student’s unique tools and responsiveness through movement. Movement as an expression of and path toward increased consciousness is explored as part of an intermodal expressive arts approach. Students also explore ways of working with others as they work to access experiences which can then be processed and integrated for a more expressive and fully embodied life.

This course provides experiential opportunities for creative self-discovery using various integrated expressive arts modalities. It offers discussion segments that explore the importance for our time and culture of engaging our connection to our own individual creativity and inner wisdom, and the effect doing this can have on the growth of personal and collective consciousness. The principal emphasis is on individual work using personal process, in-class discussions, outside assignments and the development of a self-discovery creative/visual journal.  This course is offered in a hybrid format, involving weekend experiential intensives along with guided study time for personal and professional integration.

This course offers opportunities for experiential work in the expressive and creative arts as applied to a variety of professions. The emphasis is on the modalities of expressive movement and theater arts, with the integration of visual arts and writing interwoven as part of the approach. The multi-modal approach reflects upon the ways that one mode of expression informs another, so a deeper understanding of the interplay of modalities, as an intermodal process, is another area of learning. This course is offered in a hybrid format, involving weekend experiential intensives along with guided study time for personal and professional integration.

This course explores central concepts and approaches to using the expressive and creative arts in various group settings and considers applications for a variety of group and community levels. Students learn how to design and implement a group program with appropriate uses of various arts modalities. In a specific area of professional interest, students develop a proposal for a group program demonstrating the benefits to a specific group or community. This course is offered in a hybrid format, involving weekend experiential intensives along with guided study time for personal and professional integration.

This course provides a comprehensive understanding of the principles and applications of expressive writing as a transformational tool that can facilitate emotional, physical and spiritual healing as well as self-discovery, personal growth and conflict resolution. Students learn how to adapt and integrate expressive writing into their own professional areas of specialization through class discussions and in-class writing exercises that emphasize an intermodal expressive and creative arts approach to writing. This course is offered in a hybrid format involving weekend experiential intensives along with guided study time for personal and professional integration.

This course focuses on vocal explorations and toning, elements of music for self-discovery and community-building, creativity and music, and recreational music making. This course combines theory with practical exercises that demonstrate how to incorporate the practices of deep listening and mindfulness into programs for healing and education. Through discussions and the utilization of sound and music-based exercises, students learn how to adapt and integrate elements of expressive sound and music into their own professional areas of specialization. This course is offered in a hybrid format, involving weekend experiential intensives along with guided study time for personal and professional integration.

Number of Courses

Program format.

$2,010 per course

creative arts phd

Courses are taught by seasoned professionals who are experts in their field. Instructors work one-on-one with students to follow their individual goals while serving as mentors for incorporating the training within a variety of professional pathways.

Meet Our Faculty

Payment Options

Courses are billed individually at the start of each class. Please note that there is a $60 registration fee per semester.

Tuition Reimbursement

If your employer is paying all or part of your tuition, we will arrange payment directly from your employer where possible.

Student Loans

Our certificate programs are eligible for federal student loans. To qualify, you must complete two courses per semester.

Military and Veterans

Salve Regina is approved for veterans’ benefits and has been named a Military Friendly School.

creative arts phd

PhD in Art Therapy

What is a doctorate in art therapy.

A PhD in Art therapy program is a highly creative field that combines the use of psychology and arts, including dance, visual arts, music therapy, and poetry, to help all types of individuals manage various mental and physical challenges. Art therapy combines creative arts therapies with applying principles in healthcare and psychotherapy to help improve clients’ lives. Art therapists serve multiple clients, including people with injuries, illnesses, and disabilities.

To become a practicing art therapist, potential students usually must earn either a master’s degree or a PhD in art therapy. Students can also make a master’s degree in counseling with a concentration in art therapy. Graduate programs in art therapy incorporate visual arts and various other artistic practices with psychotherapy. In addition, students complete courses in psychology, core art therapy courses, and other similar topics. Most programs also include a training component as part of the degree requirement.

How long does it take to get a PhD in Art Therapy?

Many students interested in get a PhD in Art Therapy programs usually take about three years to complete. Applicants attend artistic seminar classes and research seminar classes as well. Students must prepare a dissertation on a subject of their choice related to art therapy. Parts of the program requirements include clinical teaching and practice, multiple research classes, and studio-based artistic seminars. Earning a PhD could help professionals in the field enhance their careers. Earning a PhD in art therapy may create new opportunities for professionals to access grants and other research funding. Candidates with a PhD in art therapy may also become qualified to teach in higher education.

PhD in Art Therapy Curriculum

Courses in a doctorate in art therapy program may vary depending on the students’ focus on art therapy. However, most programs require the completion of doctoral research and a dissertation. Other coursework may include:

Popular Research and Thesis Topics for PhD in Art Therapy Students

There is a varied multitude of popular research and Ph.D. thesis topics in art therapy. Students are often encouraged to be creative and can select almost any subject. Students have written about all sorts of different issues, such as the effect of yoga on the soul and mind and bringing self-awareness through art therapy, the use of diagnostic drawing on the adolescent population, the effectiveness of clay as opposed to drawing in expressing emotions within the elderly, and many other vastly varied topics.

Students of doctorate in art therapy have also written about the image experience through art as a vehicle to personal meaning, the effect of playful humor on art therapy, the incorporation of nature into art therapy, drama therapy and its effect on female adolescents, and many other various topics relating to art therapy and its practical uses in helping clients. Art therapy Ph.D. students also execute and complete research projects in various areas of the study of art and its applications.

Many academics vigilantly and continuously conduct research studies about the effect of art therapy on mental health. Researchers and academics continually develop and execute research studies and present research papers and projects. Researchers and academics focus on many different topics relating to the uses of art therapy in certain situations, including adoption and foster care, eating disorders, autism, brain injury, and many other instances where art therapy can be helpful. Some researchers also focus on studying and investigating the role of art therapy in museums and other institutions.

The American Art Therapy Association awards excellence in research to eligible students and researchers who are members of the association and complete projects based on applied art therapy research. Students may qualify for and potentially win the Gladys Agell Award for Excellence in Research; meanwhile, professionals may be eligible for and potentially obtain the American Art Therapy Association Research Award. Cash prizes accompany both awards.

National Resources for Students

The American Art Therapy Association, or “AATA,” is a professional organization for individuals who pursue a career in art therapy. The AATA is committed to the principle that art has healing qualities and an overall positive effect on life. The mission of the AATA is to support its student and professional members as well as the general public and promote the healing powers of art therapy. The International Expressive Arts Therapy Association is an organization that aims to inspire and educate therapists, artists, educators, and consultants in the field of art therapy. Other organizations like Art Therapy Without Borders and state-based associations related to art therapy are also available to support professionals and students in the area.

Many famous and valuable academic journals are available to individuals working in art therapy. The AATA publishes the Journal of American Art Therapy Association, one of the leading publications in the field of art therapy. The Arts in Psychotherapy Journal publishes five issues a year and is filled with the work of professionals in the area and peer-reviewed articles. The Journal of Clinical Art Therapy is an online publication with peer-reviewed articles, editorials, and other helpful information related to art therapy topics to support professionals in the field.

Myths and Realities about Art

TThere are a lot of myths and misconceptions about the role of art therapists and the field of art therapy in general. One erroneous perception is that clients must create art at every art therapy session. This is not true; some sessions consist primarily or solely of talking dedicated to discussing and finding ways to resolve the client’s issues. Furthermore, clients are not required to produce artwork at every session. The goal of art therapy is not to create stellar artworks but to employ the benefits of art in a therapy setting.

Another myth about art therapy is that it’s just for artists. This is untrue; art therapy can benefit all types of clients regardless of their artistic abilities or talent. Art therapy aims to create a comfortable environment for all clients to utilize art in a healing and helpful way. Art therapy aims not to teach art to clients but to use art therapeutically. Therefore, clients can enjoy many benefits from art therapy regardless of the artistic ability that they display during sessions.

Another mistaken idea about art therapy is that it’s for children only and not for adults. This myth is entirely false; in fact, art therapy can serve to benefit people of all ages. Some art therapy practices are geared solely toward the elderly, while other art therapists serve clients of all ages. Art therapy can help clients of all ages express emotions, recover from emotional hurts, and create positive changes in their lives, along with numerous other benefits.

Another prevalent and very incorrect myth is that art therapists are just artists with no real credentials or qualifications. This perception is entirely false. Most art therapists are required to earn either master’s degree program or a doctorate in art therapy. Registered art therapists must earn at least a master’s degree in art therapy and complete a set amount of on-the-job training hours. In addition, art therapists certified by the the Art Therapy Credentialing Board must complete supervised clinical training and pass an examination.

A common myth about art therapy is that only people experiencing a significant crisis can benefit from art therapy. On the contrary, art therapy can help clients with all mental health issues or afflictions involving physical conditions. Clients can utilize art therapy to strive for personal awareness and build confidence, among many other uses. Although people going through severe mental distress can benefit greatly from art therapy, other individuals experiencing less traumatic mental health and other issues can also benefit greatly from art therapy.

Art therapy brings together the benefits of art and the clinical and theoretical applications of psychotherapy. The healing properties of art therapy can be beneficial for clients of all ages and with varying issues. Art therapists usually either have earned a master’s degree program or a PhD in art therapy. There are many graduate programs in art therapy for interested students to choose from. Master’s programs in art therapy usually take two years to complete, while a Ph.D. degree in art therapy usually takes about three years. Both programs require candidates to either write a research thesis or prepare a research dissertation on a topic relating to art therapy. Students have chosen to focus their research on many areas, including the effect of art therapy in drama on female adolescents or the impact of nature in art therapy.

There are many resources available to students and professionals in art therapy. Many national organizations are dedicated to art therapy, like the American Art Therapy Association; there are also state art therapy associations available to those in the art therapy field. Numerous publications are also available to art therapy students and professionals, including the Arts in Psychotherapy Journal and many others. Unfortunately, there are many myths and incorrect assumptions about art therapy. Still, with a bit of research, one can discover that art therapy is a field that strives to help all kinds of people by introducing them to the benefits of art therapy.

Bureau of Labor Statistics

Popular Schools with PhD in Art Therapy Programs

PhD in Art Therapy Programs offers 9 PhD | Doctorate in Art therapy Programs

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Temple University

New york university, mount mary college, roehampton university, international university of professional studies, florida state university, lesley university, university of hertfordshire, notre dame de namur university.



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Creative Arts & Design PhD Projects, Programmes & Scholarships

We have 132 creative arts & design phd projects, programmes & scholarships.

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Photography and the Digital Body

Phd research project.

PhD Research Projects are advertised opportunities to examine a pre-defined topic or answer a stated research question. Some projects may also provide scope for you to propose your own ideas and approaches.

Self-Funded PhD Students Only

This project does not have funding attached. You will need to have your own means of paying fees and living costs and / or seek separate funding from student finance, charities or trusts.

Visual Culture in Times of Political Change

Reconsidering screen images of mental distress, competition funded phd project (students worldwide).

This project is in competition for funding with other projects. Usually the project which receives the best applicant will be successful. Unsuccessful projects may still go ahead as self-funded opportunities. Applications for the project are welcome from all suitably qualified candidates, but potential funding may be restricted to a limited set of nationalities. You should check the project and department details for more information.

Creative Technologies for Society’s Grand Challenges

Finding betty joel: uncovering the hidden histories of interwar design, making and style, funded phd project (students worldwide).

This project has funding attached, subject to eligibility criteria. Applications for the project are welcome from all suitably qualified candidates, but its funding may be restricted to a limited set of nationalities. You should check the project and department details for more information.

Communicating marine science research and the urgent need for creative climate change responses/action

Doctoral studentships available at city, university of london, funded phd programme (students worldwide).

Some or all of the PhD opportunities in this programme have funding attached. Applications for this programme are welcome from suitably qualified candidates worldwide. Funding may only be available to a limited set of nationalities and you should read the full programme details for further information.

PhD Opportunities

PhD Opportunities highlight some of the specific PhD projects, programmes or other information currently available from a university.

AR and VR for heart surgery

Competitive pressures and toxic behaviours among women working in all female environments, walking, observing, connecting, belonging: propositional map making in the city, digital musical instrument co-design informed by sensory experience and aesthetic values, creative writing /phd.

The PhD opportunities on this programme do not have funding attached. You will need to have your own means of paying fees and living costs and / or seek separate funding from student finance, charities or trusts.

Humanities Research Programme

Humanities Research Programmes present a range of research opportunities, shaped by a university’s particular expertise, facilities and resources. You will usually identify a suitable topic for your PhD and propose your own project. Additional training and development opportunities may also be offered as part of your programme.

Writing trans and non-binary lives in the 20th and 21st centuries: autobiography, autofiction, autotheory

Phd opportunities in design at brunel university london, arts research programme.

Arts Research Programmes present a range of research opportunities, shaped by a university’s particular expertise, facilities and resources. You will usually identify a suitable topic for your PhD and propose your own project. Additional training and development opportunities may also be offered as part of your programme.

Skills and Capabilities for a Net-zero UK Economy

Funded phd project (uk students only).

This research project has funding attached. It is only available to UK citizens or those who have been resident in the UK for a period of 3 years or more. Some projects, which are funded by charities or by the universities themselves may have more stringent restrictions.

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Transart Institute for Creative Research

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH LIVERPOOL JOHN MOORES UNIVERSITY (LJMU) Contact Program DirectorS Michael Bowdidge or Steve Dutton by email or sign up for one-to-one meeting here .

Introduction structure labs curriculum compare admissions suggested readings testimonials, the first global low-residency practice phd.

Our unique three year Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) full-time low-residency programme requires an average work commitment of 30 hours per week. Intensive dates and lengths will vary between 2 and 14 days. You will study wherever you live and work conducting independent research with the support of individual advisory teams and peer critique. Our programme is built around your practice and intensive residencies which offer opportunities to meet other established international artists, curators and writers; participate in presentations, symposia, fora, colloquia, research seminars and topical workshops, screenings, cultural excursions, talks, peer presentations; and other events. The Creative Research PhD is for everyone with a specific project or question/s whose practice embodies or essentially drives their research. 

For twenty years, Transart has been developing a global network of institutions in multiple countries. Students, professors, guests, alumni and advisors have successfully launched sustainable global relationships and projects through shared research, long term critique groups, exhibitions, symposia, screenings, publications and performances.

With Transart 2.0, our platform of exchange has extensive opportunities for cross-pollination between creative researchers that include collaborations with international institutions. With seventeen years of global creative research exchange as an independent institution, Transart is perfectly positioned to foster a new level of international exchange, intimately and from afar, for individual and collaborative research. 

To discuss Transart's PhD program with co-Directors of Doctoral Studies Dr Michael Bowdidge & Steve Dutton, please click here


Transart provides a unique entwinement of live and trans local intensives and interim mutual support in any form you and your advisors agree upon. There are no requirements as to how these communications take place in terms of presence, media, time and space, just guidelines. As a global community discussions, advisements, critiques, and meetings often take place by Zoom, Facetime and Skype, but can also occur in person, by letter, texts, phone or in a mix of myriad forms. Interim exchanges are determined by your locations, schedules and ultimately what serves your project best. 

Our institute does not offer pre-packaged online learning. We offer unique, one time workshops in person and trans-locally so that you can contribute and respond to exercises, assignments and projects in whatever media and genres you wish to work in. Workshops are selected based on the research interests of your class. No one has the option to participate in live intensives virtually. The intimate quality of time spent at intensives is not comparable to virtual encounters. Bonds are formed in person, in workshops and cafes, in collaborations and mutually shared experiences. We are away from our jobs, families, and everything familiar, navigating the unknown and the unexpected and given a precious opportunity to spend time focussing solely on our praxis, to gain new perspective and fresh inputs and insights in our process. Off-site we sustain relations and practices in complementary and supportive ways. 



Led by your question/s —the scope of which will hold your attention for 3 years— your thesis will be an entwining of praxis, reflection and research in which writing is an integral contributor to your creative inquiry.

Accompanying your independent and/or collaborative research is an international community of researchers, including two dedicated advisors and one or more topic-based research/reading/genre/critique groups. Monthly meetings, by distance, intensive and informally off-site, are intended to support, inform, and sustain your focussed endeavour. 

Annual enrichment intensives in changing cities will: inform and contextualise your work; widen your networks; offer fresh, diverse and long term input; and offer opportunities to strengthen the ways in which you present your work, through a plethora of workshops, seminars, walkshops, lectures, artist talks, fora, panels, symposia, studio visits, pecha kuchas, slams, writing retreats, independent and lead tours of cultural institutions and performance venues, biennales and other events.

Your creative research-based project will culminate in a thesis —of no more than 40,000 words— a public presentation or Viva Voce, and an exhibition, publication, reading, model, performance, screening, or other form of dissemination suitable for presenting your new work at your final intensive.

A Creative Research PhD is for everyone who desires to: bring their praxis to a significantly new level in terms of creation and articulation; to contribute beyond their particular field to a broader artistic/academic context; to teach at all levels, transdisciplinarily or in more than one field; to continue to exhibit, publish, curate, and perform in and beyond our international community. We believe that creative practitioners deserve to receive the same level of recognition, respect and resources as those at the highest levels in other fields.

You will study wherever you live and work, conducting independent research with the support of individual advisory teams and peer critique. Our programme is built around your practice and intensive residencies which offer opportunities to meet other established international artists, curators and writers; participate in presentations, symposia, fora, research seminars and topical workshops, screenings, cultural excursions, talks, peer presentations; and other events.

Residency intensives are the heart of Transart Institute and critical hubs for events and exchange together with a myriad of exhibitions, screenings, performances, publications, conference, talks and other events that take place in-between by Transart members both collaboratively and individually—see them here . Recent residencies have taken place in Berlin, New York City and Mexico City. Transart is committed to being fluid, responsive and nomadic; to being inclusive and with a wide perspective in order to be a relevant, vital, vibrant and global community. An intensive is required each year, the dates are flexible and announced a semester in advance, subject to change only in the event of a force majeure. Translocal intensive sessions take place the last weekend of every month we are in session. These sessions are optional in your third year.

Students normally work with one member of faculty from LJMU and one or two Transart advisors for the duration of their projects. You can indicate your suggestions for your Transart advisor(s) when you submit your proposal on the Expression of Interest (EOI) form. The list of potential Transart advisors can be found under People here : 

Once an LJMU and a TT advisor (or advisors) have agreed to work with you, unless an advisor becomes unavailable, a mutual commitment is made by the team at that point. We take your preferences into account when determining advisors however advisor workloads, availability and other relevant factors are also taken into account when the final decision is made.

The LJMU ‘Chair Advisor’ role is probably best understood in terms of being the person who takes primary responsibility for guiding the student through the milestones of the PhD and as such, what is of greatest importance is that they have a good general understanding of the PhD process and in-depth knowledge of LJMU’s processes and procedures. They may also have significant expertise to in relation to your specific project, but this will vary depending on the exact nature of your research.

TT advisors/co-advisors are intended to supply the primary creative and discipline-specific expertise that you need for your project, as well as their own understanding of and perspective on practice-based research


Research training workshops at intensives deal with four main strands that are critical to development of practice-based creative research projects: Mapping the field and evaluating sources; Epistemology, reflexivity, and critical thinking – how do we know what we know?; Methods and methodologies; Articulating, documenting and presenting your research. Each of these areas will be the focus of a workshop delivered by rotating members of faculty or visiting academics.

During each intensive we will also run workshops which draw on our tried and tested hybrid practice/theory model. In these sessions participants will explore relevant philosophical and theoretical concepts and frameworks and test new ideas and working methods through a series of creative exercises and assignments (realized in media of choice and completed individually or in collaboration). These workshops aim to equip participants with expanded conceptual and aesthetic toolsets; leaving them feeling invigorated and inventive about applying the workshop ideas and processes to their individual praxis. In addition, seminars are chosen from current cultural topics viewed through the lens of media studies, literature, sociology, philosophy, and art history.

Additionally, within the first 3 months of your studies, you’ll identify and select your own personally tailored research training program from the range of resources that are available through LJMU Doctoral Academy eDoc.



The Lab asks how we can use art more effectively in society.

Lab leader: Professor John Byrne

All the research fields within The City Lab expose the impact and influence of architecture, art, fashion and design within the context of our everyday environment. The City Lab’s research projects embody how the production of original knowledge, through practice and critical theory, can lead to real, impactful and sustainable change within our contemporary culture.

Rethinking and reimagining the city through constituent practices of sustainability, material constructions and applications of technology contributes to the enhancement of our local, national and global environments. 

The research themes of City Lab simultaneously occupy the cutting edge of their disciplinary specificities whilst remaining active within the real-world context of the city. City Lab supports research and practice that embraces or focuses on those elements that are undiscovered or operate in the realms of periphery, such as design for well-being and constituent practices that enable the reimagination of marginal cultures within the urban environment.


The Exhibition Research Lab is an academic centre and public venue dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of exhibitions and curatorial knowledge.

Lab leader: Professor Joasia Krysa

Founded in 2012 as part of Liverpool School of Art and Design, the Exhibition Research Lab (ERL) is uniquely positioned across academic research and the cultural ecology of Liverpool, underpinned by partnerships with cultural institutions in the city including  Tate Liverpool ,  John Moores Painting Prize , and  Liverpool Biennial .

ERL proposes curatorial practice as a form of critical inquiry and knowledge production. It extends the traditional remit of an art gallery as a site for display or pedagogical resource, to an expanded concept of a ‘lab’ where experimental thinking and making takes place, and where curatorial knowledge is enacted, produced and made public.

ERL disseminates its research through the public programme of exhibitions, talks, seminars, conferences, workshops and publications, including partnership with  DATA Browser  book series (Open Humanities Press) and Liverpool Biennial journal  Stages . The residencies and fellowship programme is dedicated to connecting international artists, curators and scholars working across diverse disciplines.

The lab supports research in the following areas: Contemporary Curatorial PracticeExhibitionary Practices and Histories; Museums and Institutions; Collections and Archival Practices; World Biennials; Socially Engaged Practice; Digital Curating; Computational Cultures and Curating.


Work undertaken at the Contemporary Art Lab is dedicated to historical, theoretical and practice-led research in the creative and performing arts.

Lab leader:  Professor Colin Fallows

The Contemporary Art Lab is an interdisciplinary research group within the Liverpool School of Art and Design – representing the latest incarnation of the oldest research area in LJMU dating back to the 1820s. The Contemporary Art Lab and its forerunners have a long tradition of engagement with the academic and cultural ecology of Liverpool, together with well-established national and international collaborative partnerships.

The Lab supports research and practice in a diverse range of fields which intersect with concerns and concepts in contemporary art and curatorial practice. It explores understandings of contemporary art and curatorial practice as forms of critical inquiry and knowledge production.

It extends the traditional remit of artistic practice to an expanded research centre or ‘lab’ where experimental thinking and making takes place, and where artistic and curatorial knowledge is enacted, produced and published.

The Lab specialises in sound and visual arts, live performance, conceptual art, environmental art and contemporary printmaking.

Contemporary Art Lab produces: Art; Exhibitions and performances; Books, catalogues, recordings and journal publications; Research fellowships; Research and education at postgraduate and doctoral levels.

The Contemporary Art Lab produces work for a range of audiences through diverse media including: sound and performance, exhibitions, installations, interventions, workshops, screenings, talks and conference presentations. The fellowship programme is dedicated to artistic and curatorial research, the dissemination of knowledge, connecting members of the Lab to other national/international artists, curators and scholars working across disciplines. It also operates as a conduit to disseminate the work of its members and its key partners internationally.

Experimental Technologies Lab

Experimental Technologies Lab invites people to explore the possibilities of creative technology through hands-on experimentation  

Lab Leaders:  Mark Wright  and  Pete Woodbridge

Experimental Technologies Lab (ETL) is an enhancement upon four years of research pursued at our pioneering workshop and research space, FACTLab, a collaboration with Liverpool’s FACT, the Foundation for Art and Creative Technologies, the UK’s leading new technologies arts organisation. In ETL, researchers, artists and technologists produce innovative projects together as teams and you will also find artists in residence at work.

At Exhibition Technologies Lab we have perfected a research methodology of co-design. People are invited to explore the possibilities of creative technology through hands-on experimentation, with participants of a diversity of constituencies interested in getting involved with making and experimenting with electronics.

Since 2015, we have welcomed over 4,500 visitors to our events and activities. We are continuously exploring new ways to engage visitors and we work within a series of space resources: Liverpool Fab Lab for beta origination; Live Lab for testing; and the X-Gallery for dissemination. People are invited to become actively involved in what we do, no matter what their experience.

ETL operates across disciplines and functions as an incubator of creative production and critical thinking for practice-based research and experimentation in the context of critical research and theoretical expertise. In a future that we are literally creating, talent and skills development are amongst our objectives. ETL develops projects and activities aiming at cultural production and sharing of knowledge and resources, in collaboration with artists, designers, scientists, technologists, HEIs and the commercial sector.

Our facilities include traditional workshops, TV and sound studios, the X-Gallery digital and creative gallery for experimental media, an immersive projection room that we can set up for room scale multiplayer VR and projection mapping, wireless HTC Vives, Occulus Quests, Mixed Reality headsets, projectors, interactive sensors, 3D modelling tools, holographic displays, digital fabrication and 3d printing, 3D object scanners, 3D room scanners, 8K Stereoscopic 360 cameras, depth sensors, microcontrollers and sensors and a range of high end tablets, pcs, phones (iOS & Android) and devices for interface development.

Software includes games engines (Unity), 3D Creation (Maya, Cinema 4D), Adobe Creative Suite (After Effects, Photoshop, Premiere etc), Projection Mapping (Madmapper, Lightform, Heavy M) and Volumetric Capture tools (Dephkit).


Creative research journal  .

Think of your CRJ as a research laboratory, journal, archive and source for communicating and connecting research within the TT research community. You maintain a quarterly Creative Research Journal commencing with your proposal that documents your ideas, processes and the progress of your research, respond to critique in order to reflect, articulate and digest each interaction. We encourage you to devise a format that best suits your own research, making it a vital part of your practice where you experiment with presentation, documentation and articulation. Final thesis and documentation are attached here as well. Your Creative Research Journal can be password protected but will be available to your peers, advisors, critics and other invited guests forming an invaluable resource, archive and means of communication for the broader Transart research community.


Transart researchers self-organize themselves around common interests, topics, genres etc. You will hold initial meetings at residencies then continuing offsite every month (when Transart is in session) however and whenever the group decides: to present and critique each other's research; discuss readings; share publications or plan events. Given Transart's low-residency global model these groups are extremely useful and many graduates continue meeting to sustain and enrich their praxes, make vital international connections and organise exhibitions, publications, performances, screenings, panels and other events in their various localities.


Monthly advisor meetings (except Aug + Dec) Monthly weekend virtual intensives Monthly pre-Intensive reading posts Monthly pre-intensive process blog entries Monthly independent research sessions Yearly optional Micro-residencies in-person Yearly required LJMU/TT one week summer residency

TT Orientation (Oct) LJMU Registration (Oct) LJMU Research Development Sessions (virtual, a la carte)

LJMU Ethics Form + Module (if/when participants) (Draft) LJMU Program Approval Form (Nov 1) (Submit) LJMU Program Approval Form (Dec 1) LJMU First Progress Review Form (Apr 1) LJMU Annual Program Review Form (Jul 1)

LJMU Confirmation of Registration Form (Jul 1)

LJMU Confirmation of Registration Form and Submisson (Dec 1) LJMU Annual Program Review Form (Jul 1)

Confirm Viva Voce Examiners (May 1) TT Thesis Presentation Form (May 1) LJMU Pre-thesis Review Form (Jul 1) LJMU Annual Program Review Form (Jul 1) TT Final Thesis PDF Submission Form (Fall)

TT Public Presentation of Thesis Form (Jul 1) (Final draft) Thesis Submission to advisors (Final draft) Thesis PDF to TT + BLOG (Jun 1) Viva Voce (Fall)

* tt recommended due dates to finish on time.

(LJMU e-Docs will prompt you when things are due, but the system is intended for all LJMU programs and does not consider the low-residency format or accessibility during advisor + TT breaks).

All LJMU forms will be in your e-Docs account. All TT guides are here .



“I think transart provides an environment that is only comparable to Black Mountain College. There's a freedom to excel in multiple media and a support system that goes beyond the traditional teacher-student relationship. With dedication and self-motivation, you can develop lasting connections with your work, faculty and peers in a way that isn't possible in traditional academic settings. I like the optimism and trust that travels through the entire community as we work together.” — Allison Geremia, PhD

At a certain point in my career, I realised my questions were PhD questions, and that although I was teaching part-time at a university, a PhD might help me become more desirable in the market for a full-time post. I graduated in 2017, and the next year was moving across the ocean to take on my first full-time academic position. That was wonderful, but there is much more to Transart's doctoral program than the potential in the academy. They offer a connection to larger communities, and a more global perspective. Transart has put me in touch with a wider network of artists and academics than I'd ever imagined. Unlike some other programs I've been part of, I'm still in touch with former students and instructors, and we continue to collaborate. There isn't a box for people who think outside the box, but what Transart offers is as close as I'd ever want to get to that.

— Kit Danowski

“Transart presented the ideal configuration of structure and independence to successfully complete my PhD. It provided the fertile soil and parameters inside of which I had all the room I needed to freely engage with ideas--and my work-- in my own studio in my own time, as well as all the support necessary for me to grow as a thinker. My studio work has been enhanced by the ability to engage philosophy as a tool to better articulate my practice and to understand the structure of research and the progress it allows.

My fellow students were impressive. I gained interesting as well as just plain cool friends. The classes were provocative and intense, and the residency locations offered access to art and culture that further enhanced my project. My supervisors were extraordinary. Their engagement with my project was active and inspiring. They appeared well informed and interested in my project and ably assisted me through the PhD process.”

I found Transart to offer a rigorous and informed doctoral program for practicing artists.

— Lisa Osborn, PhD

“My time with Transart was a great blessing in my life. The majority of my career up until enrolling in the PhD program was spent both working and then teaching in the design disciplines. That aspect of my creative life has and continues to be rewarding due in no small part to exposure to the unique structure and curricula of Transart residencies and mentorship. The diversity of thought and artistic practice manifest in Transart faculty and fellow students has afforded me a clarity of purpose I consider uncommon in academia. As a result, I am not only a better educator, but as a Transart trained artist researcher my practice has been renewed and wonderfully enriched. In a time of remote learning, Transart is not only ahead of the curve in the delivery of curricula, but in the humanizing of arts education. Consequently, I now consider myself a designer and a writer, storyteller, painter, photographer, and even more significantly if not succinctly stated: a practicing artist.”

— Steven Evans, PhD

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Tuition for the first and second years may vary based on number of units completed in each year. Second-year tuition is the number of units multiplied by the new tuition rate for that year.

*Tuition costs per year are estimates only; costs may vary based on actual enrollment in classes.

**Tuition for Data Science is an estimate based on 32 units for the first academic year of study. Total tuition cost (35 units) is $56,525 for 2023-2024, which includes 3 units in the second academic year (Summer 2024). In addition to tuition, a one-time $500 student activity fee is charged by the MS in Data Science program.

Associated Graduate Students of USF (AGSUSF)

The $35 AGSUSF fee is applied each fall and spring semester for a total annual fee of $70. This fee funds activities and events of the Associated Graduate Students.

Health Insurance

The USF health insurance policy is required for graduate students, unless if a student is covered by equivalent insurance coverage.

USF health insurance is charged for fall (Aug 1 - Dec 31) and spring (Jan 1 - Jul 31). It is not charged or required for students who start their program in the summer until the fall enrollment period begins August 1.

Waiver Policy & Process

Student Accounts Office in Student Enrollment Services administers payment policies, billing, methods of payment, payment plans, and refunds.

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PhD Creative Arts

The minimum requirement is an honours degree (normally at least 2:1 or above) in an appropriate discipline, but a postgraduate qualification in a relevant subject area is also desirable. IELTS entry requirement is normally a minimum of 6.5 or equivalent for overseas students, but a higher score is desirable.

Before making your formal application, we recommend that you discuss your proposed research with the School’s Research Tutor, Dr Pat Simpson (see below under Key Staff for contact details).  

For details of how to apply please contact [email protected] .

When applying, please include an outline research proposal of around 1000-2000 words.

How to write a research degree proposal  

About the course

A University of Hertfordshire PhD degree is an internationally recognised research degree signifying very high levels of achievement in research, and an original contribution to knowledge in the student’s chosen field.

In the School of Creative Arts, a PhD may be undertaken in 3 years (full-time) or 6 years (part-time) in any creative arts discipline that the School engages with, and for which we have appropriately qualified supervisory staff.  We have a wide range of expertise in historical and theoretical research, as well as in practice-led/practice-based research, relating to the fine and applied arts, film, media and TV studies, interior and architecture design, music and the music industry.

During the period of PhD study you will develop extensive subject expertise and independent research skills, which are honed over an extended period of time. You will undertake a substantial self-directed research project for the duration of the degree, in negotiation with two or more academic members of staff, who are your supervisors.  In addition, you will also engage with a negotiated programme of selected generic skills development and careers workshops provided by the University of Hertfordshire Doctoral College, as well as discipline-specific research training provided by the School. 

Your proposed PhD project may be purely theoretical or practice-led/practice-based. If there is a practice element in your project, one of your supervisors will be a practitioner in an appropriate discipline, and appropriate studio space and/or workshop facilities will be made available if necessary. The School has a wide range of outstanding facilities for researchers in the broad area of creative arts, and the University library has an excellent range of relevant and up-to-date resources to support research in this area.

During the course of the degree, you would typically be expected to present your research at internal and external seminars and conferences, and to exhibit your practical work if it is part of the research project. Some opportunities in this regard may be provided by the School and/or the University. 

Teaching methods

Research degrees are not taught programmes, however, programmes of supporting studies are a key element.

PhD study in the School of Creative Arts requires regular attendance on campus, so this degree cannot normally be undertaken online from your home country, unlike the Professional Doctorates in Fine Art (DFA) and Design (DDes) . 

The School of Creative Arts has a lively research community staffed by supervisors whose research is world leading, Supervisory teams provide guidance in helping you to formulate and develop your research during the course of the programme. A minimum of 3 full-team supervisions per academic year is mandatory for full-time students (pro-rata for part-time students) but typically meetings with the full team and with individual supervisors is more frequent.

We offer a range of subject specific research training throughout various research group seminars. Our research students are strongly encouraged to participate in modules in our taught Masters programmes, and the University also has an extensive Researcher Development Programme, which is provided by the UH Doctoral College and offers generic research training.

The PhD in the School of Creative Arts has three main assessment points after enrolment: Initial registration for the degree after 8 months (for both full-time and part-time students); the doctoral progression after 18 months for full-time and pro-rata for part time students, and the final examination.

Your research project will be examined on the basis of the final submission, which may include a combination of both written and non-textual material that must be "defended" in a viva and contain a thesis (a position that can be defended by substantiated argument), and a clearly stated original contribution to knowledge in the field.

Course experts

Dr Pat Simpson Find out more about Dr Pat Simpson

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Course fees

Want to know more about research degree fees? Find out what you need to know below:


HR Excellence in Research

Graduate Programs

The links to individual graduate programs and the  Doctoral Certificate in Composition  provided in the menu to the left provide a basic accounting of the major academic milestones associated with each particular graduate program.  Links to outside sources and forms are included to assist you with locating proper forms and instructions guiding the policies involved with each milestone. These pages contain  some, but not all,  department-specific policies, procedures, and degree requirements. The department reserves the right to make changes at any time without prior notice. Further information and resources are available in the  Department of Music Graduate Handbook , from the  hhadlock [at] (Chair of the Graduate Studies Committee, Heather Hadlock) , and from student services staff.

It is the responsibility of each student to familiarize themselves with this information and to seek clarification as needed. Additionally, it is the student's responsibility to review the  Department of Music Graduate Handbook  on an annual basis.

Masters Programs

Master of Arts (MA) in Music, Science, and Technology

The MA in Music, Science, and Technology (MA/MST) degree is a two-year degree granted at the successful completion of specific coursework.  The MA/MST program is designed for candidates having an undergraduate engineering, science, music, or arts degree, or a degree that includes course work in engineering mathematics. Courses and research topics include music perception, music-related signal processing, human-computer interaction, synthesis, and inter-media among others.

[N.B. The MA/MST program is the only terminal Master's degree offered by the Department; it is two years in duration. It is available to current Stanford undergraduates as a  Coterminal Master's , current Stanford graduate students, and external applicants.]

Master of Arts (MA) in Composition

Master of Arts (MA) in Computer-Based Music Theory and Acoustics

Master of Arts (MA) in Music History

[N.B. The three MAs listed above are available only to current doctoral students in Music who wish to add a Master’s degree to their existing doctoral program. ]

Learn more about the Master's programs in the Stanford Bulletin

Doctoral Programs

The DMA in composition is offered to a limited number of students who demonstrate substantial training in the field and high promise of attainment as composers. Students may work in traditional and/or electronic forms. Breadth is achieved through studies in other branches of music and in relevant fields outside of music, as desirable. In addition to formal coursework and independent study, candidates are required to write a number of works in various forms and to present a public lecture-demonstration based on their final project, a large-scale composition.

Learn more about the DMA in Composition 

The PhD program in computer-based music theory and acoustics is offered by the Department of Music through the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA, pronounced "karma"). CCRMA is a multidisciplinary facility attracting PhD students from several departments and schools across campus including Computer Science (CS), Electrical Engineering (EE), Mechanical Engineering (ME), and Psychology (PSYCH). While all  CCRMA faculty  hold positions within the Department of Music,  Julius Smith  also holds a courtesy appointment in EE which enables him to serve as primary thesis advisor for PhD students in EE.  Ge Wang  holds a courtesy appointment in CS and, likewise, may serve as a primary thesis advisor for PhDs in CS. [N.B. Application for graduate study is handled by the corresponding home department.]

Learn more about the PhD in Computer-Based Music Theory and Acoustics 

The first three years of graduate study for graduates in musicology are devoted to completion of required coursework and passage of the qualifying and special area examinations. After the successful defense of the dissertation proposal (incorporated within the special area exam), the student concentrates on research and writing of the dissertation. The dissertation demonstrates the student’s ability to work systematically and independently to produce a substantial work of competent scholarship.

Learn more about the PhD in Musicology

Ethnomusicology at Stanford prepares students to study sound, listening, and musical practices in diverse social and cultural contexts. Intensive training in fieldwork and ethnographic methods as well as critical theory, performance studies, anthropology, and area studies are central to the program. A vital aspect of students’ experience is collaboration with historical musicology, composition, EuroAmerican music theory, and creative music-making. 

Learn more about the PhD in Ethnomusicology

Applications to the above programs may be made directly from a Bachelor’s program.

Learn more about the PhD programs in the Stanford Bulletin

Learn more about the DMA program in the Stanford Bulletin

Learn about applying to the Graduate Programs

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Julia Koets, PhD.

Dr. Julia Koets earns national creative writing fellowship

Julia Koets, PhD.

Julia Koets, PhD. (Photo courtesy of Dr. Julia Koets)

Dr. Julia Koets , an assistant professor of creative writing in the USF College of Arts and Sciences Department of English , is one of 36 writers from across the nation selected to receive a 2023 Creative Writing Fellowship of $25,000 from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)—one of the largest funders of the arts and arts education established by Congress since 1965. 

The fellowships enable recipients to set aside time for writing, research, travel and general career development.   

Koets, who competed among 1,900 applicants, was selected through an anonymous review process and chosen for her artistic excellence, according to the NEA.  

“It's an honor to be chosen for the NEA fellowship,” Koets said. “To be recognized alongside writers whose work I love. Right after I got the call from the NEA with news of the award, I called my family to celebrate.” 

Koets is the author of three books: The Rib Joint , a LAMBDA Literary Award finalist, PINE , a Florida Book Award winner, and Hold Like Owls , a South Carolina Poetry Book Award winner. 

“I submitted a selection of poems from my third book, PINE , for my writing sample for the NEA,” Koets said. “In the book, I experiment with different poetic forms, like the villanelle, to explore themes of love, desire, loss, and possibility. I grew up in the South, and that landscape features prominently in the book, as well.”  

Dr. Koets’ third book, Pine, is a Florida Book Award winner.

Dr. Koets’ third book, Pine , is a Florida Book Award winner.

Koets, who earned her MFA at the University of South Carolina and her PhD in creative writing and literature at the University of Cincinnati, says the fellowship will give her the time and resources needed to write and research for her fourth book—a collection of nonfiction essays. She’s also planning to begin work on new poems.  

“In many ways, writing is a solitary thing. When I'm working on an essay or a poem, I spend so much time in my own head, and receiving the NEA felt really encouraging—to know that my work is connecting with readers,” she said. 

For her fourth book, Koets says she weaves research with personal narrative to explore queerness and loss, memory and the villanelle, and erasure and notions of the archive—what stories have been told and recorded in public memory and what stories have remained secret.  

“There are so many people who have had an impact on me, my writing, and my academic career,” Koets said. “Teachers from elementary school to high school to college who showed me how writing could be fun. One teacher had us draw pictures alongside the writing we turned in, and I loved doing that. Drawing helped me remember details and images that I might include in the story.” 

Dr. Koets (third from right) with her creative writing colleague, Ryan Cheng, and some of her MFA creative writing graduate students at the Spoonbill Reading Series.

Dr. Koets (third from right) with her creative writing colleague, Ryan Cheng, and some of her MFA creative writing graduate students at the Spoonbill Reading Series. (Photo courtesy of Dr. Julia Koets)

“I recently read this quotation by author Hilary Mantel: ‘The question is not who influences you, but which people give you courage.’ At a recent USF MFA creative writing reading, one of my USF colleagues read a poem that made me stop and think about the act of thinking in a new way. A line he wrote stuck with me and hearing the images in his poem gave me the courage to continue working on a draft of an essay that I had been having trouble figuring out in the revision process. I am buoyed by the work my USF colleagues and graduate students are doing, the questions they're asking, and the joy and wonder in their writing.” 

Koets translates this same joy over in her career teaching creative writing.  

“To see what happens when a student slows down and explores the lyric possibilities of their work; that's one thing I love about both writing poems and essays—the page becomes a place where you look closely at things, where you consider connections between images and words that initially may not seem connected.” 

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